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Next Frontier Of Semi-Conductors Has Roots At North Carolina State

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RALEIGH — Silicon Valley in northern California may have changed the world with the silicon computer chip, but the Triangle may become Gallium Nitride Alley. The next frontier of semi-conductors has N.C. State roots.

Former N.C. State students developed the secret recipe to grow gallium nitride crystals on low-cost silicon to help create semi-conductors.

"The properties of gallium nitride allow you to scale it even smaller and still have enough signal there that you can make use of it," says Bob Lynch, CEO of Nitronex.

About a year from now, Nitronex expects its gallium nitride-based devices to be used in wireless telephone base stations. Last week, Nitronex was honored as "Start-Up Of The Year" by the North Carolina Council for Entrepreneurial Development.

Most of the world's research and development of gallium nitride semi-conductors is centered in the Triangle.