Soraa Expands Its GaN-on-GaN Manufacturing Operations In U.S.
Soraa, Inc. will open a new semiconductor fabrication plant in Buffalo, New York. In partnership with the State of New York, the company will construct a new state-of-the-art GaN on GaN™ LED fabrication facility that will employ hundreds of workers. The new facility is projected to be operational in 2015. Soraa currently operates an LED fabrication plant in Fremont, California, one of only a few in the U.S. This development follows last month's announcement that Soraa has been awarded several million dollars in funding by U.S. Department of Energy's Advanced Research Projects Agency – Energy (ARPA-E) to pursue two projects related to the development of bulk GaN (Gallium Nitride) substrates for power electronics.
"We chose Buffalo as the best location for our new fabrication facility based on several factors, including the innovative high-tech vision and strategy of Governor Cuomo; the ability to attract some of the best and brightest scientists and engineers in the world; and the capacity to tightly control the product quality and intellectual property around our LEDs through our partnership with the SUNY College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering," said Dr. Tom Caulfield, President and COO of Soraa. "With the new facility, our LED lighting capabilities will be refined and expanded, product innovation will accelerate, and light quality and efficiency will continue to improve."
"Under the largest investment in our Buffalo Billion initiative, we are building a state-of-the-art campus to house high-tech and advanced manufacturing companies that will create hundreds of jobs and leverage over a billion dollars in private investment for Western New York," Governor Cuomo said. "Today, we welcome world-renowned high-tech company Soraa to Buffalo - an affirmation that Buffalo is back and better than ever. This project marks a giant step forward in our Buffalo Billion strategy, transforming a once vacant property into a development ready site that will create good-paying permanent jobs, make Buffalo an international hub for innovation, and attract more businesses from around the world. Today, Buffalo is truly on the move."
In 2007, a team of professors from the worlds of engineering and semiconductors--Dr. Shuji Nakamura, inventor of the blue laser and LED; Dr. Steven DenBaars, founder of Nitres; and Dr. James Speck of U.C. Santa Barbara's College of Engineering--came together and made a bet on an LED technology platform completely different than current industry practice, a technology most industry experts at the time considered to be impossible to execute.
Soraa bet that GaN on GaN(TM) LEDs would produce more light per area of LED and be more cost-effective than technology based on other foreign substrates like sapphire or silicon carbide. This strategy ran against every trend in the LED industry. That bet paid off: today, the company's LEDs emit more light per LED material than any other LED; handle more electric current per area than any other LED; and the company's crystals are up to a thousand times more precise than any other LED crystal.
"Our proprietary GaN on GaN LED technology has allowed the company to make ordinary lighting extraordinarily vibrant, brilliant and efficient, in other words, simply perfect. Soraa's GaN on GaN LED bulbs are now regarded as the best in the world--whites look whiter, colors are natural and more saturated, and shadows are crisp and clean. This has fueled sales growth over the past year and created the opportunity to open a new fabrication facility," added Dr. Caulfield.