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Backing from AMRC Benefits Promising High-Tech Startups in Texas




Austin, TX (1 June 2005) - Four up-and-coming high-tech companies that started in Texas are getting technological and financial boosts from the Advanced Materials Research Center (AMRC), the joint advanced R&D effort involving SEMATECH and Texas universities.


The AMRC beneficiaries include innovators in leading-edge lithography, next-generation lighting, organic RFID systems, optical interconnects, wireless networks, and nanomaterials. Each is receiving technology or support from the AMRC, which was established in 2004 to develop new materials and nanostructures for semiconductors, and to explore opportunities for nanotechnology, biotechnology, and other emerging technologies.


"One of our primary aims in forming the AMRC is to commercialize new technology in ways that can benefit the people of Texas, by helping create the industries and jobs of the future," said Sanjay Banerjee, technology coordinator for the AMRC and a key educator in the College of Engineering at The University of Texas at Austin. "Here, we have the first fruits of that effort - four companies that are receiving significant knowledge or support for their commercially feasible innovations."

Banerjee said these companies and their AMRC affiliations include:


* Molecular Imprints (MII), based in Austin and employing about 90 people, is doing joint development work with the AMRC. UT's Engineering College also purchased one of MII's lithography tools. MII provides enabling lithography systems for manufacturing applications in nano devices, microstructures, advanced packaging, bio devices, optical components and semiconductor devices. UT Engineering professors Grant Willson and S.V. Sreenivasan initiated this technology.


* OrganicID, developing a low-cost, organic electronic process technology designed to replace bar codes with printable electronic radio-frequency (RF) ID tags. (Silicon RFIDs cost up to $1 each, and are too expensive for item-level tagging.) Associated with Dr. Ananth Dodabalapur of UT's College of Engineering, OrganicID maintains a technology development center located at UT's Microelectronics Research Center, one of the facilities making up the AMRC.


* Austin-based Xidex Corporation, assisted by AMRC funding and facilities, developed one of Texas' first business applications of nanotechnology for semiconductor production. The Xidex process uses carbon nanotubes as surface sensors for scanning probe microscopes, which can measure the dimensions of extremely small features in semiconductor devices. Dr. Keith Stevenson of UT's Chemistry and Biochemistry Department collaborates with Xidex on process development.


* Dallas-based Zyvex Corp., one of the world's first molecular nanotechnology companies, is collaborating with AMRC researchers and has teamed with the Texas Workforce Commission on major workforce training in nanotech. Zyvex is assisting TSTC in developing the "gold" standard for a nanotechnology curriculum focused on advanced nanomanufacturing and an internship program that can be replicated by other nanotechnology companies and community colleges across the State. SEMATECH has been instrumental in creating a consortium of industry partners to accomplish the goals for the Nanotechnology Workforce Development Initiative. Zyvex produces R&D tools, nanomaterials, and assembled micromachines.


"With these early successes, the AMRC has done a commendable job in realizing its mission to commercialize critical research in advanced technologies," said Michael R. Polcari, SEMATECH President and CEO. "We look forward to the continuation of these promising business collaborations, which we believe will help create the technology clusters of industries and jobs that will benefit Texans for generations to come."

About UT's College of Engineering:
The University of Texas College of Engineering ranks among the top ten engineering schools in the United States. With the nation's third highest percentage of faculty elected members of the National Academy of Engineering, the College's 6,500 students gain exposure to the nation's finest engineering practitioners.


Appropriately, the College's logo, an embellished checkmark used by the first UT engineering dean to denote high quality student work, is the nation's oldest quality symbol. The College maintains a web site at <http://www.engr.utexas.edu>.

About SEMATECH:


SEMATECH is a global semiconductor technology development consortium that has effectively represented the semiconductor manufacturing industry on innovation issues since 1988. SEMATECH conducts state-of-the-art research, and is a highly-regarded technology partner whose goal is to promote the interests common to all chipmakers. It has extensive experience collaborating with equipment and materials suppliers, as well as government and academic research centers, to refine the tools and technology necessary to produce future generations of chips. Additional information may be found at www.sematech.org <http://www.sematech.org>. SEMATECH, the SEMATECH logo, AMRC, Advanced Materials Research Center, ATDF, the ATDF logo, Advanced Technology Development Facility, ISMI and International SEMATECH Manufacturing Initiative are servicemarks of SEMATECH, Inc. All other servicemarks and trademarks are the property of their respective owners.


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