Semiconductor Industry Association 2019 Agenda Strikes Familiar Chords

By John Russell

April 2, 2019

The Semiconductor Industry Association (SIA) today issued its annual agenda – Winning the Future: A Blueprint for Sustained U.S. Leadership in Semiconductor Technology– and to a considerable extent the report’s themes are those SIA has championed for several years. SIA urges larger federal investment in semiconductor research, more efforts to expand free trade, better IP enforcement, and more aggressive STEM workforce development.

No doubt there’s a bit of “motherhood and apple pie” here but it’s undeniable the semiconductor industry is an engine of the future perhaps deserving of special attention. The SIA report says, “[S]emiconductors underpin the most exciting “must-win” technologies of the future, including artificial intelligence to power self-driving cars and other autonomous systems, quantum computing to analyze huge volumes of data and enhance digital encryption, and advanced wireless networks to seamlessly connect people at unprecedented speeds and security.”

According to SIA, the U.S. still leads the world in leading-edge semiconductor research, design, and manufacturing. U.S. semiconductor companies commanded nearly half of the $469 billion global semiconductor market in 2018. The U.S. has a positive trade balance in semiconductors with virtually all our major trading partners, including China, and provided a net surplus of $4.5 billion to the overall trade balance in 2018. China get a little extra attention from SIA, “[T]he Chinese government has announced efforts to invest well over $100 billion over the next decade to catch up to the United States in semiconductor technology…While China may not meet all its goals, the size and scale of its effort should not be ignored.”

Here are the report’s top line recommendations: “To overcome these challenges and ensure continued U.S. leadership of the global semiconductor industry, the U.S. must adopt an ambitious semiconductor competitiveness and innovation agenda [including:].

  • “Invest in research. Triple U.S. investments in semiconductor-specific research across federal scientific agencies from approximately $1.5 billion to $5 billion annually to advance new materials, designs, and architectures that will exponentially increase chip performance. Double U.S. research investments in semiconductor-related fields such as materials science, computer science, engineering, and applied mathematics across federal scientific agencies to spur leap-ahead innovations in semiconductor technology that will drive key technologies of the future, including artificial intelligence, quantum computing, and advanced wireless networks.
  • “Attract and develop a skilled workforce. Reform the high-skilled immigration system by eliminating counterproductive caps on green cards so qualified STEM graduates from U.S. colleges and universities, as well as STEM graduates from around the world, can work, innovate, and contribute to U.S. leadership in the semiconductor industry and boost our economy. Increase U.S. investments in STEM education by 50 percent and implement a national STEM education initiative to double the number of American STEM graduates by 2029.
  • “Ensure access to global markets and protect intellectual property. Approve and modernize free trade agreements, including the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement, that remove market barriers, protect IP, and enable fair competition. Increase resources for law enforcement and intelligence agencies to prevent and prosecute semiconductor intellectual property theft, including the misappropriation of trade secrets.”

In announcing the 2019 report Sanjay Mehrotra, president and CEO of Micron Technology and 2019 SIA chair said, “Global technology leadership has never been more important, with so much at stake for America’s future economic growth and competitiveness. The country that leads in semiconductor innovation will also lead the next wave of technology advances, influencing every aspect of the economy and life. We call upon our leaders in Washington to enact policies that will keep us at the forefront of the must-win technologies of the future.”

While one can argue about how much federal investment is enough, the U.S. has certainly continued to invest in semiconductor and related technologies. DARPA’s $1.5 billion Electronics Resurgence Initiative (ERI) is probably the most prominent (see HPCwire article, US Chip Initiative Aims For ‘Moore’s (Law) Inflection’). Likewise the $1.25 billion U.S. National Quantum Initiative will invest in some semiconductor-related work (see HPCwire article, U.S. National Quantum Initiative Act Signed and Delivered – What’s Next?). Even the U.S. exascale computing effort will indirectly fund some semiconductor-related research.

As noted in the report, the semiconductor industry has invested heavily in research: “Nearly one-fifth of U.S. semiconductor industry revenue is invested in R&D, amounting to approximately $36 billion in 2017, triple the amount invested 20 years ago. This is among the highest shares of any industry, and the vast majority of this research is conducted in the U.S. The industry’s investment is primarily targeted at applied research and product development, not the basic research needed for long-range, fundamental technology breakthroughs. To supplement this private-sector commitment, the U.S. needs to increase federal investments at universities, national labs, and other entities to maintain our leadership in this critical industry.”

Many observers argue the relative scarcity of technical talent is a bigger problem. SIA argues the U.S. is also falling behind global competitors in most education benchmarks. “China is producing many more bachelor’s degrees in STEM fields. At the graduate level — which generates the expertise in materials science, physical chemistry, electrical engineering, and other fields of importance to the semiconductor industry — a large percentage of students in relevant fields at U.S. colleges and universities are from foreign countries. In electrical engineering and computer science graduate degree programs at U.S. colleges and universities, the NSF indicates that approximately 80 percent of students are from foreign countries, a rapidly increasing trend.

“The U.S. needs a comprehensive long-term plan to attract young students — particularly underrepresented women and minorities — to science and engineering and expose them to work in labs, advanced manufacturing, and apprenticeships.”

Link to SIA press release: https://www.semiconductors.org/semiconductor-industry-calls-for-bold-federal-policies-to-sustain-u-s-leadership-in-chip-technology-harness-transformative-technologies-of-the-future/

Link to SIA annual agenda report: https://www.semiconductors.org/winthefuture/

Subscribe to HPCwire's Weekly Update!

Be the most informed person in the room! Stay ahead of the tech trends with industy updates delivered to you every week!

First All-Petaflops Top500 List Debuts; US Maintains Performance Lead

June 17, 2019

With the kick-off of the International Supercomputing Conference (ISC) in Frankfurt this morning, the 53rd Top500 list made its debut, and this one's for petafloppers only. The entry point for the new list is 1.022 petaf Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Nvidia Embraces Arm, Declares Intent to Accelerate All CPU Architectures

June 17, 2019

As the Top500 list was being announced at ISC in Frankfurt today with an upgraded petascale Arm supercomputer in the top third of the list, Nvidia announced its intention to make Arm a full citizen in the processing arch Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Final Countdown to ISC19: What to See

June 13, 2019

If you're attending the International Supercomputing Conference, taking place in Frankfurt next week (June 16-20), you're either packing, in transit, or are already ensconced at the venue. In any case, you're busy, so he Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

HPE Extreme Performance Solutions

HPE and Intel® Omni-Path Architecture: How to Power a Cloud

Learn how HPE and Intel® Omni-Path Architecture provide critical infrastructure for leading Nordic HPC provider’s HPCFLOW cloud service.

For decades, HPE has been at the forefront of high-performance computing, and we’ve powered some of the fastest and most robust supercomputers in the world. Read more…

IBM Accelerated Insights

Transforming Dark Data for Insights and Discoveries in Healthcare

Healthcare in the USA produces an enormous amount of patient-related data each year. It is likely that the average person will generate over one million gigabytes of health-related data across his or her lifetime, equivalent to 300 million books. Read more…

The US Global Weather Forecast System Just Got a Major Upgrade

June 13, 2019

The United States’ Global Forecast System (GFS) has received a major upgrade to its modeling capabilities. The new dynamical core that has been added to the GFS – its first new dynamical core in nearly 40 years – w Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

First All-Petaflops Top500 List Debuts; US Maintains Performance Lead

June 17, 2019

With the kick-off of the International Supercomputing Conference (ISC) in Frankfurt this morning, the 53rd Top500 list made its debut, and this one's for petafl Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Nvidia Embraces Arm, Declares Intent to Accelerate All CPU Architectures

June 17, 2019

As the Top500 list was being announced at ISC in Frankfurt today with an upgraded petascale Arm supercomputer in the top third of the list, Nvidia announced its Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Final Countdown to ISC19: What to See

June 13, 2019

If you're attending the International Supercomputing Conference, taking place in Frankfurt next week (June 16-20), you're either packing, in transit, or are alr Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

The US Global Weather Forecast System Just Got a Major Upgrade

June 13, 2019

The United States’ Global Forecast System (GFS) has received a major upgrade to its modeling capabilities. The new dynamical core that has been added to the G Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

TSMC and Samsung Moving to 5nm; Whither Moore’s Law?

June 12, 2019

With reports that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TMSC) and Samsung are moving quickly to 5nm manufacturing, it’s a good time to again ponder whither goes the venerable Moore’s law. Shrinking feature size has of course been the primary hallmark of achieving Moore’s law... Read more…

By John Russell

The Spaceborne Computer Returns to Earth, and HPE Eyes an AI-Protected Spaceborne 2

June 10, 2019

After 615 days on the International Space Station (ISS), HPE’s Spaceborne Computer has returned to Earth. The computer touched down onboard the same SpaceX Dr Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

Building the Team: South African Style

June 9, 2019

We’re only eight days away from the start of the ISC 2019 Student Cluster Competition. Fourteen student teams from eleven countries will travel to Frankfurt, Read more…

By Dan Olds

Scientists Solve Cosmic Mystery Through Black Hole Simulations

June 6, 2019

An international team of researchers has finally solved a long-standing cosmic mystery – and to do it, they needed to produce the most detailed black hole simulation ever created. Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

High Performance (Potato) Chips

May 5, 2006

In this article, we focus on how Procter & Gamble is using high performance computing to create some common, everyday supermarket products. Tom Lange, a 27-year veteran of the company, tells us how P&G models products, processes and production systems for the betterment of consumer package goods. Read more…

By Michael Feldman

Cray, AMD to Extend DOE’s Exascale Frontier

May 7, 2019

Cray and AMD are coming back to Oak Ridge National Laboratory to partner on the world’s largest and most expensive supercomputer. The Department of Energy’s Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Graphene Surprises Again, This Time for Quantum Computing

May 8, 2019

Graphene is fascinating stuff with promise for use in a seeming endless number of applications. This month researchers from the University of Vienna and Institu Read more…

By John Russell

Why Nvidia Bought Mellanox: ‘Future Datacenters Will Be…Like High Performance Computers’

March 14, 2019

“Future datacenters of all kinds will be built like high performance computers,” said Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang during a phone briefing on Monday after Nvidia revealed scooping up the high performance networking company Mellanox for $6.9 billion. Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

AMD Verifies Its Largest 7nm Chip Design in Ten Hours

June 5, 2019

AMD announced last week that its engineers had successfully executed the first physical verification of its largest 7nm chip design – in just ten hours. The AMD Radeon Instinct Vega20 – which boasts 13.2 billion transistors – was tested using a TSMC-certified Calibre nmDRC software platform from Mentor. Read more…

By Oliver Peckham

It’s Official: Aurora on Track to Be First US Exascale Computer in 2021

March 18, 2019

The U.S. Department of Energy along with Intel and Cray confirmed today that an Intel/Cray supercomputer, "Aurora," capable of sustained performance of one exaf Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Deep Learning Competitors Stalk Nvidia

May 14, 2019

There is no shortage of processing architectures emerging to accelerate deep learning workloads, with two more options emerging this week to challenge GPU leader Nvidia. First, Intel researchers claimed a new deep learning record for image classification on the ResNet-50 convolutional neural network. Separately, Israeli AI chip startup Hailo.ai... Read more…

By George Leopold

The Case Against ‘The Case Against Quantum Computing’

January 9, 2019

It’s not easy to be a physicist. Richard Feynman (basically the Jimi Hendrix of physicists) once said: “The first principle is that you must not fool yourse Read more…

By Ben Criger

Leading Solution Providers

SC 18 Virtual Booth Video Tour

Advania @ SC18 AMD @ SC18
ASRock Rack @ SC18
DDN Storage @ SC18
HPE @ SC18
IBM @ SC18
Lenovo @ SC18 Mellanox Technologies @ SC18
NVIDIA @ SC18
One Stop Systems @ SC18
Oracle @ SC18 Panasas @ SC18
Supermicro @ SC18 SUSE @ SC18 TYAN @ SC18
Verne Global @ SC18

TSMC and Samsung Moving to 5nm; Whither Moore’s Law?

June 12, 2019

With reports that Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co. (TMSC) and Samsung are moving quickly to 5nm manufacturing, it’s a good time to again ponder whither goes the venerable Moore’s law. Shrinking feature size has of course been the primary hallmark of achieving Moore’s law... Read more…

By John Russell

Intel Launches Cascade Lake Xeons with Up to 56 Cores

April 2, 2019

At Intel's Data-Centric Innovation Day in San Francisco (April 2), the company unveiled its second-generation Xeon Scalable (Cascade Lake) family and debuted it Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Cray – and the Cray Brand – to Be Positioned at Tip of HPE’s HPC Spear

May 22, 2019

More so than with most acquisitions of this kind, HPE’s purchase of Cray for $1.3 billion, announced last week, seems to have elements of that overused, often Read more…

By Doug Black and Tiffany Trader

Arm Unveils Neoverse N1 Platform with up to 128-Cores

February 20, 2019

Following on its Neoverse roadmap announcement last October, Arm today revealed its next-gen Neoverse microarchitecture with compute and throughput-optimized si Read more…

By Tiffany Trader

Announcing four new HPC capabilities in Google Cloud Platform

April 15, 2019

When you’re running compute-bound or memory-bound applications for high performance computing or large, data-dependent machine learning training workloads on Read more…

By Wyatt Gorman, HPC Specialist, Google Cloud; Brad Calder, VP of Engineering, Google Cloud; Bart Sano, VP of Platforms, Google Cloud

Nvidia Claims 6000x Speed-Up for Stock Trading Backtest Benchmark

May 13, 2019

A stock trading backtesting algorithm used by hedge funds to simulate trading variants has received a massive, GPU-based performance boost, according to Nvidia, Read more…

By Doug Black

In Wake of Nvidia-Mellanox: Xilinx to Acquire Solarflare

April 25, 2019

With echoes of Nvidia’s recent acquisition of Mellanox, FPGA maker Xilinx has announced a definitive agreement to acquire Solarflare Communications, provider Read more…

By Doug Black

HPE to Acquire Cray for $1.3B

May 17, 2019

Venerable supercomputer pioneer Cray Inc. will be acquired by Hewlett Packard Enterprise for $1.3 billion under a definitive agreement announced this morning. T Read more…

By Doug Black & Tiffany Trader

  • arrow
  • Click Here for More Headlines
  • arrow
Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!
Share This