Arizona State University (ASU) and Applied Materials, Inc. announced an alliance, aided by the Arizona Commerce Authority, that brings more than $270 million to create a world-class shared research, development and prototyping facility, the Materials-to-Fab (MTF) Center, in the university's MacroTechnology Works building at ASU Research Park. The MTF Center will be designed to accelerate the transfer of innovations from ideation to fab prototype by bringing semiconductor manufacturing equipment into a collaborative ASU and Applied Materials environment to work with industry partners, startups, government entities and academic institutions. The MTF Center will provide students and faculty with opportunities for hands-on learning and research on the same 300mm equipment used in production fabs.

The new MTF Center will be home to Applied's Center of Excellence in materials deposition technology. Design of the MTF Center has already begun and is expected to be operational within two years. The MTF Center is supported by investments of $30 million from the Arizona Commerce Authority, $17 million from ASU and $25 million in Arizona New Economy Initiative funding and bonds.

Applied Materials' contributions are anticipated to exceed $200 million including capital investments, equipment operation and maintenance, and research and scholarship funding. To build an inclusive talent pipeline, Applied Materials also intends to launch an endowment fund that will provide scholarships to first-generation and/or underrepresented minority students in the ASU Ira A. Fulton Schools of Engineering. In addition, the Applied Materials Momentum Fund will be available to students at ASU, and provide grants to women pursuing undergraduate degrees in engineering, helping to overcome potential financial barriers and accelerating access to careers in the semiconductor industry.