Air Force Research Laboratory Awards BRIDG $7.5 Million
BRIDG to lead efforts to develop secure semiconductor “digital twin”
Kissimmee, Fla. – The U.S. Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL), the primary scientific research and development center for the Air Force, has awarded BRIDG a major federal defense contract valued at $7.5 million to develop a secure digital twin for semiconductor (SDTS) capability that will enable end-users to validate the integrity of a chip or assembly of multiple chips.
AFRL plays an integral role in the discovery, development, and integration of cost-effective warfighting technologies for the air, space, and cyberspace force. BRIDG, a not-for-profit, public-private-partnership that provides semiconductor manufacturing research and development capabilities and infrastructure for 200mm advanced microelectronics production in Central Florida, will spearhead AFRL’s SDTS initiatives centered on collecting key data from the design and manufacturing processes to accelerate time to market, improve quality, reduce costs, and establish provenance for semiconductor devices.
“Ensuring the trust and assurance integrity of microelectronics is a major challenge and BRIDG is poised to work with our partners to deliver solutions that protect against malicious function insertion, fraudulent products, theft of intellectual property, and reliability failures,” stated Brett Attaway, director of business development, BRIDG.
BRIDG will apply smart manufacturing and Industry 4.0 strategies, including digital twin manufacturing concepts, to develop data-driven, quantifiable security standards and methodologies for the fabrication of microelectronics that are well aligned with the needs of both the federal government and commercial customers in the automotive, aerospace, defense, medical, and industrial markets.
This contract, which immediately follows the recent announcement of a $20 million award with the U.S. Department of Defense’s Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment (IBAS) office, is another step in a larger effort that the federal government is beginning to undertake to foster microelectronics innovation and ensure access to state-of-the-art capability. “These awards prove that BRIDG’s efforts are necessary to realize the must-win technologies of our nation’s future economy, including 5G, Internet of Things, and artificial intelligence,” says Attaway.
“With the recent contracts awarded, BRIDG is positioned to become a leader in innovative solutions to secure the microelectronics supply chain for critical infrastructure. This enables us to provide more opportunities for bachelor’s and master’s degree students to be involved in creating real world solutions to these critical challenges and helps build a stronger, more security-minded workforce from institutions such as our partners at the University of Central Florida,” stated Chester Kennedy, BRIDG CEO. “We look forward to expanding student engagement as we deliver on projects that not only protect our nation but also propel innovation.”
BRIDG is the anchor tenant of NeoCity, a 500-acre technology district in Osceola County, Florida; a region that was long recognized as a tourist and agriculture economy but is now being recognized by the federal government as a region for empowering the nation’s microelectronics.
The Air Force Research Laboratory (AFRL) is the primary scientific research and development center for the Air Force. AFRL plays an integral role in leading the discovery, development, and integration of affordable warfighting technologies for our air, space, and cyberspace force. With a workforce of more than 11,000 across nine technology areas and 40 other operations across the globe, AFRL provides a diverse portfolio of science and technology ranging from fundamental to advanced research and technology development. For more information, visit www.afresearchlab.com.
BRIDG is a not-for-profit, public-private partnership specializing in advanced system integration and packaging, digital and RF silicon interposers, microelectronics production, and III-V materials growth for sensors, optoelectronics, and high-speed transistors. BRIDG offers production process technologies, R&D capabilities, and 200mm microelectronics fabrication geared toward system miniaturization, device integration, hardware security, and product manufacturing key to aerospace/defense, 5G and the IoT/AI revolution. Supported by Osceola County, University of Central Florida, Florida High Tech Corridor Council and others, BRIDG is an ITAR-certified and DMEA trust-ready supplier that provides the physical infrastructure and collaborative process to connect challenges and opportunities with solutions; “Bridging the Innovation Development Gap” making commercialization possible. Located at NeoCity—a 500-acre master-planned community of innovation in Florida—BRIDG is centrally located 20 minutes from Orlando International Airport and within a mile of Florida’s Turnpike.