Muscat – On the road to manufacturing Oman’s first advanced microchips, a milestone has been achieved with the Oman-1 and Oman-2 chips after a successful round of testing in Taiwan.
The chips were sent to the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company last year, where these underwent thorough testing to ensure readiness for production.
‘Exciting news as the Oman-1 and Oman-2 chips have officially arrived, marking a significant milestone for our nation. These chips – proudly designed by Omani engineers – are now back.
Initial testing has indicated that the chips are alive. More testing results will be shared as soon as available,’ GSME Oman, the company responsible for manufacturing the chips posted on LinkedIn.
Following return from Taiwan, the chips are going undergoing trial. ‘Embarking on a groundbreaking journey as chip testing kicks off for nine innovative projects. Six blocks tested with 100% success; this achievement is a great sign of hope and pride that local talent is on par with international standards in chip design. This achievement marks a significant milestone in Oman’s semiconductor journey,’ the company stated.
Praising the team in the sultanate, Farhat Jahangir, Founder, President and CEO of GSME, the parent company, said, “Great job GSME Oman and special thanks to Dr Rashad Ramzan, Dr Hassan Saif, National University of Computer and Emerging Sciences and the University of Nizwa team for your great support in enabling semiconductor design training in Oman.”
Oman-1 and Oman-2 represent the innovativeness and promise of Oman’s semiconductor industry. ‘Notably, this achievement showcases Oman’s commitment to technological advancement in the semiconductor industry, aligning with the vision set forth in Oman Vision 2040.’
“The fact that these chips are proudly made by our own engineers showcases the incredible talent and potential in our country. Looking forward to more exciting updates as further testing progresses,” Raqiya al Quraini, Integrated Circuit Designer at GSME Oman, posted on LinkedIn.
Announcing the project in June last year, H E Dr Ali bin Amer al Shidhani, Undersecretary for Communications and Information Technology in the Ministry of Communications, Transport and Information Technology, hailed the development as a momentous achievement in the field of semiconductors and microchip production in Oman.
“This achievement serves as a testament to the capabilities and talents of Omani youth in designing integrated circuits in locally equipped laboratories.”
He believed the breakthrough would “pave the way for both local and global investments in research, development and manufacturing of these advanced chips, and provide valuable employment opportunities to our ambitious youth”, while fostering growth of semiconductor and chip-related industries in the country.
“Overall, the success of GSME Oman will contribute to the establishment of an integrated ecosystem that may support the semiconductor and electronic chips industry in the sultanate,” H E Shidhani said.
ITHCA Group invests in GSME
The government-backed ITHCA Group, which is mandated to enhance the sultanate’s digital capabilities, has invested in the Silicon Valley-based semiconductor design firm GS Microelectronics (GSME).
The group has concluded an agreement with GSME, which was signed by Said al Mandhari, CEO of ITHCA Group, and GSME’s Jahangir.
According to Mandhari, this strategic investment by the group in GSME is an important financial achievement and a technological leap forward for Oman, “as this investment confirms our keenness to promote innovation. This gives Oman a head start and leadership in the semiconductor industry”.