EC Launches Chips Joint Undertaking under the European Chips Act

EC Launches Chips Joint Undertaking under the European Chips Act

The European Commission has officially inaugurated the Chips Joint Undertaking (Chips JU), which will reinforce the European semiconductor ecosystem and Europe's technological leadership. It will bridge the gap between research, innovation, and production, facilitating the commercialization of innovative ideas.

The Chips JU will, among others, deploy pilot lines for which the Commission announced today the first call with €1.67 billion of EU funding. This is expected to be matched by funds from Member States to reach €3.3 billion, plus additional private funds. In addition, the European Semiconductor Board held its first meeting today. The Board brings together Member States to provide advice to the Commission on the consistent implementation of the European Chips Act and international collaboration in semiconductors.

The Chips JU is the main implementer of the Chips for Europe Initiative (expected total budget of €15.8 billion until 2030). The Chips JU aims to strengthen Europe's semiconductor ecosystem and economic security by managing an expected budget of nearly €11 billion by 2030, provided by the EU and participating states.

The Chips JU will set pre-commercial, innovative pilot lines, providing industry state-of-the-art facilities to test, experiment, and validate semiconductor technologies and system design concepts, deploy a cloud-based Design Platform for design companies across the EU, support the development of advanced technology and engineering capacities for quantum chips, and establish a network of competence centers and promote skills development. The work of the Chips JU reinforces Europe's technological leadership by facilitating the transfer of knowledge from the lab to the fab, bridging the gap between research, innovation, and industrial activities, and by promoting the commercialization of innovative technologies by European industry including start-ups and SMEs.

To launch its first calls for innovative pilot lines, the Chips JU will make €1.67 billion in EU funding available. The calls are open to organizations that wish to establish pilot lines in the Member States, typically research and technology organizations, calling for proposals on fully depleted silicon on insulators towards 7 nm, leading-edge nodes below 2 nm, heterogeneous system integration and assembly, and wide bandgap semiconductors. The deadline for the calls for these pilot lines is in early March 2024.