The UPC will coordinate the new interuniversity master’s degree in Semiconductor Engineering and Microelectronic Design

A researcher in the clean room of the ETSETB, on the Diagonal North Campus of the UPC

A researcher in the clean room of the ETSETB, on the Diagonal North Campus of the UPC

The UPC, the UB, the UAB and the URV, with the collaboration of the IMB-CNM of the CSIC, programs, for the academic year 2024-2025, the new interuniversity master's degree in Semiconductor Engineering and Microelectronic Design, intended for train the next generation of professionals in this field. The master's degree will be taught in English and pre-registration will open in the first semester of 2024.

Jan 10, 2024

The aim of creating the inter-university master's degree in Semiconductor Engineering and Microelectronic Design/Semiconductor Engineering and Microelectronic Design arises from the urgent need to train professionals in this field, following the recent chip crisis. It will be coordinated by the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya - BarcelonaTech (UPC), with the participation of the University of Barcelona (UB), the Autonomous University of Barcelona (UAB) and the Universitat Rovira i Virgili (URV), and the strategic collaboration of the Microelectronics Institute of Barcelona (IMB-CNM) of the Superior Council of Scientific Research (CSIC).

In addition, the approval of the European Chips Act  by the European Parliament in 2022 highlights the need to invest in talent training and skills development in the semiconductor field. The document estimates that there are thousands of vacancies in Europe for electronic engineers. Also, it identifies the need to invest in new technological lines and pan-European design platforms.

Semiconductor and microelectronic technology are fundamental pillars today, as they form the basis of electronic devices enabling communication, computing, medicine and many other aspects of contemporary society. Within the context of the growing demand for highly qualified professionals in this field, the interuniversity master’s degree in Semiconductor Engineering and Microelectronic Design has been designed to provide students with the skills and knowledge required to tackle future technological challenges. Training in both semiconductor manufacturing and microelectronic design in a single master’s degree is one of the programme’s distinguishing features.

During the master’s degree creation process, the driving institutions have worked closely with Fabcat, a group of microelectronics professionals and companies that, in recent years, have promoted Catalonia as a location for semiconductor factories and supported the attraction of productive investment.

A comprehensive programme with a broad spectrum of knowledge
Starting in September 2024, this new interuniversity master’s degree will accept 30 students. It will consist of 60 ECTS credits and will be taught in English. Pre-enrolment will open in the first semester of 2024.

Coordinated and managed by the UPC’s Barcelona School of Telecommunications Engineering (ETSETB), it will offer comprehensive education combining the resources and academic excellence of participating universities—with years of experience in semiconductor engineering and microelectronic design training and research—and the involvement of the CSIC’s IMB-CNM, a benchmark in microelectronic technologies.

The programme covers a wide range of topics and offers two specialisations. The specialisation in Semiconductor Engineering will provide training in the use of microelectronic chip technologies in several aspects, such as clean room manufacturing, encapsulation, characterisation and reliability analysis, as well as the physical understanding of phenomena occurring in current and emerging semiconductor devices. The specialisation in Microelectronic Design aims to train in the design of integrated digital and analogue microelectronic circuits and systems in advanced technologies.

Advanced laboratories and in-company placements
Students on the new master’s degree will have access to state-of-the-art laboratories and will have the chance to participate in innovative research projects. One of these laboratories is the IMB-CNM’s Micro and Nanofabrication Clean Room, a Unique Science and Technology Infrastructure (ICTS) of 1,500 square meters that will provide students with an unparalleled opportunity to delve into microelectronic technologies from a more practical and applied perspective.

In addition, the programme will offer placements in technological companies to complete students’ education and boost their employability while meeting the demands of the microelectronics industry.