CRANE, Ind. (WTWO/WAWV) — Calling it a momentous milestone, Purdue University President Mung Chiang praised the leadership at Naval Surface Warfare Center Crane Division as the two groups announced a permanent partnership.

The partnership is titled Purdue@Crane, and will focus on investing in collaborative research involving hypersonics, energetic materials, semiconductors, and other trusted microelectronics. The two groups had been partnered for similar reasons in the past, but both groups touted the new agreement as taking previous partnerships to the ‘next level’.

“Today marks a momentous milestone and turns a new chapter in the collaboration between Purdue and Crane,” Purdue University President Mung Chiang said. “This new strategic partnership with the most important defense presence in our state brings excellence at scale to deliver solutions for national security research. With one of the nation’s largest and highly ranked STEM programs, Purdue is excited to become a permanent neighbor and dedicated partner with NSWC Crane. As America’s leading university in semiconductor workforce and innovation, we are also looking forward to the new semiconductor ecosystem at WestGate Foundry 1.”

The partnership will begin with a $2 million budget for this fiscal year, however, as the program continues to scale up the investment is expected to grow to $40 million by 2030. The newly established Purdue@Crane is expecting to also do collaborative work with other companies located at WestGate@Crane Technology Park including NHanced Semiconductors Inc. and Everspin Technologies Inc.

An initial focus of this initiative — secure and reliable microelectronics — will be led by a research director, an experienced and respected leader in defense microelectronics who will expand workforce and technology development in advanced packaging, reliable and trusted microelectronics, and electronic system design.

Purdue University News Release

Plans for the Purdue facility are to include 3,000 square feet of space in WestGate Academy as well as cleanroom space at WestGate Foundry 1.

Governor Eric Holcomb said the partnership shows the state’s commitment to next-level development.

“Having this formalized strategic collaboration in place will not only assist in strengthening America’s national security but also provide the academic talent pipelines necessary for next-generation innovation,” Holcomb said. “I applaud President Mung Chiang and the base leadership for formalizing this important and impactful partnership.”

Senator Todd Young said the partnership is important to the country’s security.

“Our national security depends on partnerships among higher education, the private sector, and all layers of government,” Young said, “and this venture is yet another example of how Indiana is leading the way.”

“NSWC Crane’s partnership with Purdue University is stronger than ever, and the strategic investment in Purdue@Crane is a true testament that our priorities are aligned to provide critical defense solutions to solve some of the nation’s toughest technical challenges,” said Angela Lewis, NSWC Crane’s technical director. “It is an honor to collaborate with an esteemed academic institution like Purdue, and I am excited to see this investment mature, particularly in the fields of hypersonics and microelectronics development.”