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Europe leads the way to innovative electronics

Twelve European centres for electronics research and business development joined forces to create a virtual silicon cluster that aims to build a worldwide development network for energy-efficient systems. Shaping a cutting-edge network of leading micro- and nanoelectronics, Silicon Europe is claimed to be the biggest technology cluster in the world.
Europe leads the way to innovative electronics
The European Commission has published a communication outlining the importance of key enabling technologies for society and economy. Micro- and nanoelectronics, including semiconductors, are essential for all goods and services that require intelligent control in sectors as diverse as transportation, aeronautics and space. Smart industrial control systems allow more efficient management of electricity generation, storage, transport and consumption through intelligent electrical grids and devices.

In the EU-funded project SILICON EUROPE (Developing a leading-edge European micro- and nanoelectronics cluster for energy efficient ICT), five renowned European clusters joined forces to boost Europe's position in innovative electronics.

SILICON EUROPE's aim was to promote micro- and nanoelectronics as a key enabling technology for the traditional industry, unlocking new solutions for the major societal challenge on energy efficiency. This was supported by the development of a new communication concept on the strategic importance of micro- and nanoelectronics. Furthermore, it has secured know-how by using inter-cluster synergies and complementarities with research institutes, fabless design houses and value added system integrators.

A major project outcome was the presentation of a strategy paper for European microelectronics, 'Joining forces for European leadership for innovative electronics – A 5-step joint action plan'. This action plan identified five fields that need to be addressed to make Europe the world leader in innovative electronics.

Upon project completion, partners decided to continue their collaboration, deepening and enlarging it into the Silicon Europe Alliance that now unites about 2 000 cluster partners from industry and science. These include innovative small and medium-sized enterprises, leading-edge research institutions, and global players in the field of information and communication technologies (ICT).

By bringing together the technological expertise and resources of Europe's leading players in micro- and nanoelectronics, the SILICON EUROPE cluster created a new level of transnational collaboration. This should enable Europe to become the world-leading centre for energy-efficient electronics, while effectively working to address increasing energy demand.

Related information

Keywords

Innovative electronics, silicon cluster, energy-efficient systems, micro- and nanoelectronics, SILICON EUROPE
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