10/11/2013 7:28:24 AM

Times Union: Ruiz redux, with 'Nano Utica'

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Times Union

Former AMD chief part of plan to build computer chip center


Utica's attempt at a second act as a manufacturing powerhouse is getting some help from Hector Ruiz, the man who put computer chip manufacturing in Saratoga County.

Ruiz, who convinced Gov. George Pataki and Senate Majority Leader Joseph Bruno seven years ago to give his company, Advanced Micro Devices, more than $1 billion to build a computer chip factory in the town of Malta, is bringing a start-up company to the SUNY Institute of Technology outside of Utica.

The company, Advanced Nanotechnology Solutions, is one of six businesses — including IBM, the Sematech chip consortium and Tokyo Electron — that will spend $1.5 billion and hire more than 1,000 people over several years for a $125 million computer chip research center the state is building on the SUNY IT campus in the Utica suburb of Marcy.

The administration of Gov. Andrew Cuomo is calling the consortium "Nano Utica" and believes it offers a blueprint for duplicating the success of the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering in Albany in other upstate cities.

The building currently under construction, called the Computer Chip Commercialization Center, or Quad-C, will focus on chip "packaging," the complex housing that encases a chip and includes the wiring that connects it to a computer or a smart phone.

The idea for Quad-C first emerged as part of a $1.6 billion deal that the administration of Gov. David Paterson negotiated with IBM in 2008. The deal was designed to save thousands of jobs at IBM in East Fishkill while adding 1,000 more in Albany and at another upstate location that turns out to be the SUNY IT campus.

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