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K-State Today

March 21, 2012

Wichita company, Advanced Manufacturing Institute team up for project to make better electronic products

Submitted by Communications and Marketing

Consumers stand to benefit from a project by Wichita company Nitride Solutions Inc. and Kansas State University's Advanced Manufacturing Institute.

Nitride Solutions turned to the institute for help in automating and simplifying its process operations in the creation of aluminum nitride substrates, materials that serve as a foundation on which electronic devices are manufactured.

Nitride Solutions develops and commercializes a low-cost, high volume manufacturing process to produce single-crystal nitride substrates that are more affordable and better quality than those currently available in the market. The substrates produced by the company will improve performance and efficiency of existing LED, laser and electronic products, while also making deep ultraviolet devices possible. Future uses for the substrates include consumer and industrial lighting, power systems in hybrid vehicles, coloring on flat-screen TVs and water purifiers.

John Bloomfield, Advanced Manufacturing Institute associate engineer and certified LabVIEW developer, helped Nitride Solutions save time and improve automation with its substrate process control. LabVIEW provides a graphical programming environment that enables engineers to develop measurement, test and control systems.

"The certification means that the programs I write adhere to the best practices endorsed by National Instruments in areas of functionality, style, documentation and speed of development," Bloomfield said. "Nitride Solutions is utilizing a custom application to help them develop and execute the appropriate substrate recipes by commanding and monitoring process variables such as temperature, pressure and flow from a computer."

In addition to Nitride Solutions' connection to Kansas State University through the Advanced Manufacturing Institute, several key employees and advisers hail from the university.

"AMI has been a tremendous asset to us during the development of this software package," said Jeremy Jones, CEO of Nitride Solutions. "Even though we are an early-stage company, we made a critical decision to develop our manufacturing processes to be scalable, and AMI's LabVIEW services are a key piece of that scalability. We were also glad that we could leverage K-State resources in this project."

For more information about Nitride Solutions visit http://www.nitridesolutions.com.

The Advanced Manufacturing Institute is a part of Kansas State University's College of Engineering, a Kansas Department of Commerce Center of Excellence and an Economic Development Administration University Center that provides engineering and business services. More information about the institute is available online at http://www.amisuccess.com.