Cactus Materials, Inc. will begin high-volume production of compound semiconductors products in its new semiconductor fabrication facility in Tempe.
The applications covered by the products being manufactured include state-of-the-art technology for self-driving cars, 3D sensing for facial recognition, artificial intelligence, medical imaging, and more.
The facility was acquired at the end of last year. Since that time, significant investment has been made in refurbishing it into a state-of-the-art facility that is ready for high-volume production.
Cactus Materials, Inc. is a story that Arizona can be proud of. The company started with funding from NASA and the Department of Energy as a small niche innovator. Now that it is set up for high-volume production, Cactus Materials will play a large role in ushering in a new era of the semiconductor industry in Arizona supporting national security and commercial applications alike.
CEO Rafi Islam, who is a former Intel manager and an ASU graduate with a PhD in Engineering, said, “We are proud to play a role in supporting the effort to bring the strength of our semiconductor manufacturing and the resiliency of the supply chain back to the USA and the Greater Phoenix Metropolitan Area. We are entering a new era of bringing back manufacturing in technology to the USA. Silicon Valley advances and products are no longer only in the San Francisco Bay area anymore.”
There are distinct advantages to investing in the semiconductor industry in Arizona. The talent pool with the universities plays a major role. The whole ecosystem and supply chain from materials to packaging are here, and some cost advantages as well, he added.
High-volume production will take place supported by facility upgrades and investment up to $300 million in the next five years, leveraging the support of the Chips and Science Act of 2022 Funding is administered by the U.S. Department of Commerce.
Mayor Corey Woods and the Tempe Economic Development team took a tour of the Cactus Materials facility earlier this year. They own one of only four machines in the world that can make their products in the quantity needed.
“Tempe is known for innovation and Cactus Materials truly represents the future of technology,” said Tempe Mayor Corey Woods. “I was impressed with the facility and with Dr. Islam and his team.”
Chip manufacturing companies make products that benefit the entire supply chain. Related companies and the entire economy will grow as a result of this initiative, said Dr. Islam.