US President Barack Obama has announced the first of three new manufacturing institutes to be unveiled in the next few weeks.
Obama announced the institute, the Next Generation Power Electronics Innovation Institute, at North Carolina State University.
The hub will join 18 companies and six universities for semi-conductor technology research, and is funded by a $US 70 million grant from the US Department of Energy and matched investment from its private partners.
Many of these planned hubs have been blocked by an uncooperative congress, NPR explains.
Defending the length of time for the North Carolina semiconductor hub to be announced, Obama’s press secretary Jay Carney told the New York Times and others that planning requirements were the explanation.
“If we had announced everything in a week,” the Times reports Carney as saying.
“You would have said it wasn’t serious, it wasn’t real, and the assessments made about where to launch these initiatives weren’t rigorous and substantive.”