Seagate invests in nanotech

The storage manufacturer is putting £170m into developments including thin film technology
Written by Tom Espiner, Contributor

Seagate Technology, a company that designs, manufactures and markets hard drives, announced on Wednesday that it will invest over $300m (£170m) at its two manufacturing plants in Northern Ireland over the next four years.

Seagate's Londonderry plant will become the company's main manufacturing facility and a development site for hard drives.

The company will extensively invest in nanotechnology, including new cleanrooms, at the nanotech research and manufacturing facility.

The second Seagate plant in Northern Ireland, at Limavady, will produce a wider range of aluminium substrates for integration into Seagate's hard drive products for desktop computers and business servers.

"The Londonderry plant will now become a nanotechnology centre of excellence in the development of thin film technology, specialising in next generation and leading-edge photolithography. It will bring total expenditure by Seagate at this facility to almost $600m since it opened in 1993," stated John Spangler, managing director of Seagate Technology Media Ireland.

"Our research and development projects have benefited substantially from ease of access to the resources and experienced nanotech research teams at Queen's University Belfast and the University of Ulster," he added.

Both projects are being assisted by Invest Northern Ireland, the region's economic development agency.

"As Seagate Technology continues to spend more on research and development than any of its competitors, this new investment project will consolidate the position of Londonderry as a global nanotechnology centre," said Iain Miller, director of Invest Northern Ireland, Europe.

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