Industry Leader Applied Materials' New Facility Will Strengthen Upstate New York's Position as a Global Hub for Groundbreaking Research
Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced the opening of the Materials Engineering Technology Accelerator, or META Center, which is located on the SUNY Polytechnic Institute campus in Albany. The META Center, led by Applied Materials, Inc., is a first-of-its-kind facility aimed at speeding customer prototyping of new materials, process technologies and devices. At the META Center, engineers can evaluate novel chip materials, structures and devices, testing them in a robust pilot manufacturing environment and accelerating their readiness for customer high-volume manufacturing facilities.
"With the opening of the META Center, New York State continues to lead the way by attracting industry leading companies like Applied Materials that will grow our high-tech economy," Governor Cuomo said. "This milestone will lead to many new advancements in research and development, attract new businesses to the state, and bring us closer to the technology of tomorrow, today."
The partnership between New York State and Applied Materials was announced in November 2018, and began a new strategic alliance between New York State, SUNY and Applied Materials. Under the agreement, Empire State Development will provide a five-year, $250 million capital grant for the SUNY Research Foundation to purchase and install tools in an advanced research and development facility that will further position the Capital Region to be a global materials engineering research hub. Applied Materials will pay more than $100 million in leases to develop the facility, part of their $600 million investment in the campus.
Additionally, researchers across the SUNY system will be invited to submit proposals for joint research and development activities with Applied. Applied's research investments of up to $25 million will be matched by SUNY for up to $50 million in total research funding. The new partnership will also result in internships and research opportunities for SUNY students that are available at no other institute of higher education.
Applied Ventures, the venture capital arm of Applied, and its partners will co-invest $20 million in venture capital for early-stage businesses across Upstate New York, with ESD providing an additional $10 million grant for a total of $30 million to foster new technology and create high-tech jobs.
Steve Ghanayem, senior vice president of New Markets and Alliances at Applied Materials, said, "We are excited to open the doors of the META Center and invite the industry to collaborate with us to accelerate innovation, from materials to systems."
Om Nalamasu, CTO of Applied Materials and president of Applied Ventures, said, "Applied Materials welcomes innovators from established and emerging fields to work with us at the META Center to speed the commercialization of new technologies for the AI Era."
SUNY Chancellor Kristina M. Johnson said, "The META Center further establishes SUNY Poly as a world-class hub for advanced technology research and development. We are excited to work with Applied Materials to spur new collaboration opportunities throughout the technology sector and across the SUNY network."
ESD Acting Commissioner, and President & CEO-designate Eric Gertler said, "New York State is home to a thriving high-tech ecosystem and the opening of the META Center will keep us at the forefront of technology innovation. The partnership we've developed with NY CREATES, SUNY and Applied Materials will create the building blocks to bring new business, research, jobs and educational opportunities to the state for years to come."
Dr. Douglas Grose, Future President of NY CREATES, said, "As we reach this milestone with Applied Materials and in partnership with Empire State Development and SUNY, we are proud to note the significant progress which has already been a hallmark of the META Center in its first year. The rapid ramp up of the Center's capabilities and the growth of related, quality high-tech jobs all point to a strong future, and we look forward to supporting this collaboration's positive impact in the region and across New York State."
Dr. Grace Wang, SUNY Poly Interim Vice President, said, "I am thrilled to join Governor Cuomo and SUNY in congratulating Applied Materials as they mark the opening of the META Center less than one year after announcing this critical, collaborative materials research and development initiative. As the META Center and efforts such as the research partnership further take shape, SUNY Poly is proud to act as a magnet for faculty, staff, and students from SUNY Poly and beyond to delve into related 21st century advanced materials R&D while we continue to look forward to a bright future supporting New York State's innovation economy."
The META Center will be a world-class hub for materials engineering R&D, prototyping and pilot projects for Applied's existing semiconductor customers as well as new high-tech customers in the fields of Artificial Intelligence, Augmented and Virtual Reality, advanced optics, big data, life sciences and autonomous vehicles, among others.
The opening of the META Center further solidifies the Capital Region's status as Upstate New York's "Tech Valley" and ensures the SUNY system will remain at the forefront of cutting-edge research, development and innovation in high-tech industries. Applied is the leader in materials engineering solutions used to produce virtually every new chip and advanced display in the world.
Senator Neil Breslin said, "The fact that the Meta Center is opening right here in the Capital Region is no accident. The Capital Region is home to world-class academic institutions and cutting edge nanotech companies and the ground-breaking collaboration and research and development that will be possible is a perfect fit for the region. This is another great milestone that will result in more jobs and economic growth for the area."
Assemblymember Patricia Fahy said, "The opening of the new META Center marks yet another cutting edge addition to the Tech Valley. Each new STEAM job produces a positive multiplier effect on the surrounding local economy and job market. The growth of SUNY Poly ensures the Capital Region will have a robust tech economy for years to come."
Assemblymember John T. McDonald III said, "The opening of the Materials Engineering Technology Accelerator (META Center) on the SUNY Polytechnic Institute campus is welcome news from a technological standpoint and an unprecedented opportunity for SUNY Poly in terms of the economic benefits as well as to our Capital Region due to the other private sector investments that the META Center will be contributing to the campus. This partnership will yield dividends for our Capital Region Tech Valley and will contribute to economic growth in the region, an accomplishment for everyone involved."
Albany County Executive Daniel P. McCoy said, "The grand opening of the Applied Materials META Center at SUNY Poly strengthens the growing "Tech-Valley" ecosystem that has been a boon to the Capital Region. The META Center will provide an engine for advanced research and development and will continue to bring new and exciting businesses to the region which will result in well-paying jobs and economic opportunities."
Albany Mayor Kathy Sheehan said, "Albany is proud to be home to one of the country's truly great research and development institutions at SUNY Poly, and we are excited that the META Center is opening its doors in the Capital City. This significant investment by the state demonstrates Governor Cuomo's commitment to ensuring that New York's 'Tech Valley' will continue its proud tradition of leading the way on innovation for years to come."
For nearly two decades, New York State research facilities have been at the center of significant technological advancements and breakthroughs, from developing the machinery and equipment for next-generation wafers to inventing some of the smallest and most advanced computer chips in the world. By hosting industry-leading public-private consortiums, the region's transformation to "Tech Valley" - a global hub for nanotechnology, semiconductor R&D and manufacturing, and industry leading public-private consortiums - has generated billions in economic activity and tens of thousands of jobs throughout the Capital Region.
A 2018 report by Georgetown University estimated that more than 60,000 total direct, indirect, induced, and construction jobs upstate are attributable to nanotechnology, driven in large part by the semiconductor industry.
The semiconductor industry is a major economic contributor both nationally and within New York State. A recent U.S. Semiconductor Industry Association analysis estimated that each direct semiconductor industry job enables 4.89 jobs in other sectors of the economy, with the U.S. semiconductor industry accounting for roughly a quarter of a million direct U.S. jobs and over a million additional indirect jobs.