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Chiptech Twente: a strong cluster

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Twente is on the national and international map as a hotspot for semicon and specifically for analogue chip design, photonics and as an important supplier to ASML. With a strong Integrated Circuit Design department at the University of Twente headed by professor Bram Nauta, the MESA+ institute and around 50 semiconductor-related SMEs, customers worldwide benefit from the unique knowledge of Twente. These companies have one thing in common: they all work closely with the University of Twente and Saxion University of Applied Sciences, which have a long and impressive history and a strong international scientific track record in the fields of electrical engineering, microelectronics, nanotechnology, photonics, quantum technology and microfluidics.

The chips that roll out of the wafer fabs of Global Foundries, Tower Semi (part of Intel), TSMC, UMC and – more closely at home – NXP are designed by Twente companies such as Axign, Bruco IC, Chain IC, ItoM, MEMSIC and the Twente design departments of multinationals Ansem (a Cyient company), Dialog Semiconductors (part of Renesas) and Teledyne-Dalsa (former Axiom IC). Chip design is not the only part of the ecosystem that is strongly represented; other parts of the semicon cluster are also strongly anchored in Twente and the Eastern Netherlands, including the MESA+ institute of the University of Twente, Salland Engineering, IMS, Bronkhorst High-Tech, test centre Eurofins | MASER and equipment company Solmates. From Twente we supply components to ASML, but more importantly we have state-of-the-art analogue and RF chip design companies, digital chip design companies companies, (integrated) photonics and microfluidic MEMS, packaging companies and companies that integrate these chips and MEMS into products for the automotive, communications, healthcare and industrial electronics markets. Strong growers in photonics and microfluidics include companies suchas as Lionix International, Phix, QuiX and Micronit.

What makes Twente strong is that we are a region with a strong concentration of innovative and knowledgeintensive SME companies, a high degree of cooperation between the universities and these companies and a close cooperation between the companies themselves. Short lines of communication and an entrepreneurial spirit guarantee a high rate of innovation, crossovers and collaboration. Moreover, these SMEs are often still in Dutch or European hands; an important advantage in the pursuit of more mutual dependencies between the continents in the chip industry.


  • Having independent companies in chip design.
  • A strong Integrated Circuit Design department, with a focus on analogue, RF and mixed signal design, and a high stayrate of talent in Twente.
  • A strongly growing photonics cluster.
  • The MESA+ institute in which more than 600 scientists work on new technologies in the field of, among others, semicon, photonics and quantum technology.
  • The MESA+ Nanolab as a place where science and companies work together on new technology.
  • Companies that are able to develop unique solutions for customers and each have their own specific knowledge.
  • Companies and knowledge institutions that continuously seek new combinations and continue to innovate.
  • A strong network in which companies, scientists and talent can quickly find each other. As a result, talent is retained for the region (and the Netherlands!).

Companies in the cluster



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