Highlights 2021

February 2021

Midi MINATEC lunch talks go remote, recordings available

After a hiatus during the first Covid-19 lockdown, the beloved Midi MINATEC lunches had returned to normal by October, convening every Friday. In December, however, the weekly rendezvous had to go virtual. Every week, the online auditorium can accommodate up to 200 live attendees with full access to the chat feature for speaker Q&A. For the rest, it is business as usual! Midi MINATEC lectures are still held every Friday at 12:30 p.m. at Maison MINATEC.
The video recordings are posted on the Midi MINATEC YouTube channel after the event. And, with an average of 700 views, the recordings are very popular. Dr. Fabrice Navarro’s December 4 lecture on the potential for innovation in vaccine technologies set a record with 1,700 views and counting!
Midi MINATEC YouTube channel: https://www.youtube.com/user/MINATEC
Contact: julie.spinelli@cea.fr


April 2021

Four renovation projects will improve building energy performance at CEA-Grenoble

Four CEA-Grenoble buildings (40, D5, C4, and D4) will be rehabilitated to improve their energy performance. The work, financed to the tune of €12 million through the French government’s economic recovery package, will kick off this year and be completed in 2022 and 2023.
Building D5, home to Irig lab facility, will get an all-new insulated roof. The roofs and façades of all four wings of Building 40, home to a clean room and CEA-Leti office space, will be renovated and insulated. The other projects will take place at CEA-Liten. The C4 building project will focus on the north-facing façade and the replacement of certain HVAC* equipment. The D4 building will get roof repairs and improvements to boost the thermal performance of the building envelope.
Contact: thierry.vignon@cea.fr


June 2021

MINATEC Enterprises gets a new office and CEO

Some changes have been made at MINATEC Entreprises in response to a directive in France’s Notre Act of 2015 that transfers responsibility for economic policy from the national to the regional government.
Yannick Neuder, Vice President of the Auvergne-Rhône-Alpes Regional Council, has succeeded Annick Merle (Vice President of the Isère General Council) as CEO of MINATEC Entreprises. Ms. Merle will serve as Vice President, MINATEC Entreprises with Guy Jullien (Grenoble Alpes Métropole) and Jean-Charles Guibert (CEA). In other news, Pierre-Édouard Cardinal has succeeded Alain Ramberti as Chief Operating Officer.
The new management team will focus on the pressing issue of what to do about the BHT3 building. The BHT1 and BHT2 buildings have been completed and the decision to build BHT3 has been confirmed. However, a timeline and other operational questions still need to be addressed.
Contact: pierre-edouard.cardinal@minatec-entreprises.com


October 2021

Grenoble-Alpes University’s application for national IDEX (Initiatives of Excellence) funding was approved in late June
Patrick Lévy, former coordinator of the Grenoble-Alpes University IDEX

Grenoble-Alpes University’s application for national IDEX (Initiatives of Excellence) funding was approved in late June.
Were you surprised?
We wanted it and our local stakeholders certainly worked hard to make it happen.
We were careful not to take anything for granted. This was not a given. You have to remember what has been happening on other campuses. Toulouse’s grant was revoked in 2016, and Lyon’s in 2020. The Paris-Saclay and Paris Sciences-Lettres campuses had their probationary periods extended through 2020.

What was the committee looking for?
What they wanted to see were education and research already working together at the local level to provide a solid foundation for an international-caliber campus. The University president’s office has to have full autonomy to make strategy decisions. Grenoble-Alpes University strengthened its relationships with national research organizations like the CEA, CNRS, Inserm, and INRIA. This was structured around an Experimental Campus that also includes schools Grenoble INP, Sciences Po Grenoble, and ENSAG.

What does it mean in terms of funding?
It gives us substantial security. We know we will be getting €30 million per year for research, research-driven education, and education in general—for programs with a positive impact on student life, arts and culture, and the campus’ overall identity.
There are also other national grants that haven’t yet been awarded. The ExcellenceS grants, for example, will bring an additional €400 million to the 20 existing IDEX and ISITEcampuses.

Contact: patrick.levy@univ-grenoble-alpes.fr


December 2021


You were appointed Director of CEA-Leti in July. How have you adjusted to your new role?
S.D.: Quickly!
If you remember, back in July there was a lot of talk about the semiconductor shortage, technological sovereignty, and Intel’s plans to expand its manufacturing base into Europe.
The French government’s Directorate General for Enterprise (DGE) and Brussels very rapidly asked us to make recommendations on priority R&D topics and other initiatives to shore up the industry.

How well equipped is CEA-Leti to tackle the challenges of the next few years?
I have met with our biggest industrial R&D partners. What stands out the most is their trust in the institute.
Looking ahead, the Nano 2025 program will provide some guarantees in terms of resources. Additional support, which we would be able to use to purchase equipment and hire staff, is also a possibility.
Most importantly, the people at CEA-Leti are highly motivated and committed.
While we are certainly not taking anything for granted, we feel that we are in a good position.

Is this a turning point in CEA-Leti’s history?
A year ago, many people didn’t even know what semiconductors were. Today, they are all over the headlines. CEA management at all levels—up to and including the Chairman—supports our microelectronics research.
And microelectronics is very present in the government’s France 2030 investment plan. This is an unprecedented time in microelectronics, the likes of which we have never seen.
We plan to step into our role supporting this industry more fully than ever before. Boosting our attractiveness as an employer will also be vital in the coming years.

Contact: camille.giroud@cea.fr

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