March 16, 2011

Regions Nano-Future Is Looking Bright

By: by Timothy Dunn, The Observer-Dispatch


In the late 1990s, New York state began an aggressive strategy to attract semiconductor manufacturing and nanotechnology-related innovation.

Here in the Mohawk Valley, EDGE led the charge with an aggressive marketing effort that was energized by Advanced Micro Devices' 2006 decision to site a computer chip center in Malta.

Since, EDGE has spanned the globe to promote the 300-acre greenfield site known as Marcy Nanocenter at SUNYIT. We've also worked with community partners and educational institutions to communicate the initiative locally; outlining the physical and economic changes that come with a project of this scale.

Marcy NanoCenter at SUNYIT will transform the economy of our region, and because of that, EDGE has looked to local partners such as the Genesis Group to help convey the impact of this project. In just the last 12 months, The Genesis Group has:

* Welcomed Dr. Alain Kaloyeros, vice president and CEO of the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at the University at Albany, as the keynote speaker at its 10th annual dinner.

* Organized a bus trip to the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at the University of Albany to allow more than 100 local residents the opportunity to see firsthand the innovative research taking place at this industry-leading research and development center.

* Welcomed Mohawk Valley EDGE to present a briefing on the Marcy NanoCenter at SUNYIT project at its monthly Genesis general meeting.

In addition to these activities, other regional partners are advancing the nanotechnology initiative. Last fall, ground was broken on the Quad-C and Center for Advanced Technology projects at SUNYIT, and those projects are currently anticipated to begin construction this summer.

Given the continued momentum in the area for these projects and the interest by our local community, EDGE is partnering with the Genesis Group and our local chambers of commerce to present a special program called Nano 101: Marcy NanoCenter at SUNYIT, Nanotechnology, Jobs and Growth.

This program will focus on semiconductor manufacturing attraction, nanotechnology research and development, the anticipated economic growth associated with chip center siting and how these investments will affect you. We'll have an opportunity to outline how and why this industry is the right fit for our region.

Since this is a community forum, there will be plenty of time for questions and answers, and we encourage it.

To ensure local residents are able to attend, this event will be in two locations - on Tuesday, March 22, in the Kunsela Hall auditorium at SUNYIT from 6:30 to 8 p.m., and on Thursday, March 24, in the Hummel Corporate Center auditorium at Herkimer County Community College from 6:30 to 8 p.m.

If you live or work in the Mohawk Valley, there's a good chance the location of a semiconductor fab plant in Marcy will affect you in some way. We're hoping you're able to join us for this event to find out more and have your questions answered.