Semiconductors have become the red blood cells of the world economy — tiny carriers of its lifeblood. This was obvious in the last year, when virtual connections were vital, and a shortage of computer chips wreaked havoc on the U.S. economy.
Computer chips are also increasingly critical components of military hardware and will help determine outcomes in the newest domain of conflict: cyberspace.
No one designs chips like American companies, but the U.S. role producing these products takes a back seat to countries in Asia, including archrival China.
Washington is poised to spend perhaps tens of billions of dollars to reinvigorate domestic chip manufacturing. This series is aimed at showing what comes next.
Part I: Congress eyes big bucks for tiny computer chips
How Washington is poised to launch a multibillion-dollar bonanza for the semiconductor industry — and which states stand to gain.
Part II: Questions swirl over subsidies for chip industry
Congress’ legislative proposals in this arena are useful but a comprehensive national strategy is required, experts say.
Part III: Microchip security continues to confound Pentagon
How the Pentagon is struggling to figure out chip security in both senses — making sure the military has access to the best chips and that they are not compromised.