© Cree Electronics Production | September 24, 2019
Cree targets NY for silicon carbide expansion
Cree Inc. announced a major step in its progress toward establishing a silicon carbide corridor on the East Coast with the addition of an upstate New York build-out of the world’s largest silicon carbide fabrication facility.
The new automotive-qualified 200 mm power and RF wafer fabrication facility will complement Cree’s materials factory expansion currently underway at its Durham, North Carolina headquarters. Plans call for the size of the New York facility to reach 480,000 square-feet by 2022, with approximately one-fourth of the space dedicated to clean-room space. The new fab facility in Marcy, New York is part of Cree’s capacity-expansion plan for its Wolfspeed silicon carbide and GaN business and will be “highly automated” according to a company press release. The new facility’s capabilities will be instrumental in driving the transition from silicon to silicon carbide technology, which supports the EV, 4G/5G mobile and industrial markets, the release said. The new facility is possible through a strategic partnership with Governor Andrew M. Cuomo’s office as well as other state and local agencies and entities. For its contribution, New York state will provide a USD 500 million grant from Empire State Development. Cree will also be eligible for additional local incentives and abatements as well as equipment and tooling from State University of New York (SUNY). Cree CEO Gregg Lowe said, “Silicon carbide is one of the most pivotal technologies of our time, and is at the heart of enabling innovation across a wide range of today’s most groundbreaking and revolutionary markets, including the transition from the internal combustion engine to electric vehicles and the rollout of ultra-fast 5G networks.” “We’re excited to become part of Cree’s efforts to drive the transition from silicon to silicon carbide, and this partnership will be a key part of our work to strengthen the research and scientific assets that New York State will use to attract the industries and jobs of tomorrow,” said Empire State Development Acting Commissioner and President and CEO-designate Eric J. Gertler. “The Mohawk Valley offers a unique combination of valuable high-tech and scientific assets, and this is an important next step in growing our advanced manufacturing infrastructure and investing in our upstate economy.” Cree is headquartered in Durham, North Carolina, with multiple locations in Europe and Asia.