Circuit breakthrough: How University of Alberta spinoff company is ushering in future of electronics

The discovery that silicon could be used to make transistors smaller and more efficient in the late 1950s led to the invention of the integrated circuit — the basis for computers, cellphones and just about every other electrical device in use today — and signalled the dawn of the largest, most complex industry history has ever known.

And while North American manufacturers used this homegrown technology to get a head start, today’s $500-billion semiconductor industry has largely moved on.

“The North American semiconductor industry has fallen behind the rest of the world, but I believe Alberta and Canada are now positioned to help the North American industry regain its competitive advantage and its competitive strength,” said Ken Gordon, CEO of the University of Alberta spinoff company Quantum Silicon Inc. (QSi).

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