Vice President Kamala Harris flew into Mountain View’s Moffett Federal Airfield this morning before heading to Sunnyvale to deliver remarks about the administration’s investment in semiconductor research.
According to the vice president’s daily schedule, Harris arrived at Moffett around 11:10 a.m. on Monday, May 22. At noon, she was slated to convene a roundtable with tech CEOs to discuss semiconductor research and development, followed by remarks at 1:30 p.m. about the administration’s implementation of the CHIPS and Science Act.
President Joe Biden signed the bipartisan act into law in August 2022, CHIPS being an acronym for Creating Helpful Incentives to Produce Semiconductors. The legislation promised “historic investments” in semiconductor research and development, “ensuring U.S. leadership in the technology that forms the foundation of everything from automobiles to household appliances to defense systems,” according to a White House fact sheet.
“The CHIPS and Science Act will unlock hundreds of billions more in private sector semiconductor investment across the country, including production essential to national defense and critical sectors,” the White House added.
The latest private sector investment comes from Applied Materials, a semiconductor and display equipment company headquartered in Santa Clara, with additional Bay Area locations in Sunnyvale and many more across the globe. The company announced May 22 that it plans to invest up to $4 billion on a new semiconductor innovation center in Sunnyvale, which could create up to 2,000 engineering jobs, according to the company.
“While semiconductors are more critical to the global economy than ever before, the technology challenges our industry faces are becoming more complex,” Gary Dickerson, president and CEO of Applied Materials, said in a statement.
As the number of connected devices grows, coupled with the rise of artificial intelligence, the demand for chips is increasing, according to Applied Materials.
Given the ongoing global chip shortage spurred by the COVID-19 pandemic, “chipmakers face significant challenges to sustain the pace of innovation required to meet this demand,” the company statement said, making this latest investment especially important.
After speaking with tech CEOs about these challenges, Harris will deliver public remarks in Sunnyvale about the CHIPS and Science Act, according to The White House. This will be livestreamed on The White House’s YouTube page.