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There is a global need for microelectronics that are safe, reliable, and trustworthy. However, the design and manufacturing of these microchips is challenged by a number of factors, including disruptions of the manufacturing chain as well as an urgent need for a rapid increase in the skilled microelectronics workforce.

The Scalable Asymmetric Lifecycle Engagement (SCALE) network addresses this need. SCALE is the preeminent U.S. program for semiconductor workforce development in the defense sector.

Led by Purdue University, funded by the Department of Defense and managed by NSWC Crane, SCALE facilitates a different approach to training highly-skilled U.S. microelectronics engineers, hardware designers, and manufacturing experts, ensuring U.S. leadership in this important area.

SCALE provides unique courses, mentoring, internship matching and targeted research projects for college students interested in five microelectronics specialty areas: radiation-hardening, heterogeneous integration/advanced packaging, system on a chip, embedded system security/trusted AI, and supply chain awareness.


  • 500+ students enrolled since 2020
  • 69 students graduated to date
  • 46 new full-time job placements recorded
  • Over 66% of graduating undergrads entering defense microelectronics sector
  • 67 public, private and academic partners
  • $30M DOD funding


Unparalleled training opportunities

Undergraduate and graduate students enrolled in SCALE get mentoring, internship and research opportunities at leading companies, universities and federal research organizations that are part of the network.

Learn more about the benefits of participation

Tailored curriculum

SCALE provides both introductory microelectronics modules and advanced curriculum covering advanced topics such as radiation hardening and system on chip.

Learn more about curriculum in technical areas of microelectronics