UAlbany Partners with DeepHow on AI Training for Semiconductor Manufacturing

A student at the College of Nanotechnology, Science, and Engineering works on a nanoscale device.
UAlbany's College of Nanotechology, Science, and Engineering is deploying DeepHow, an AI-based tool for mastering technician and engineering skills used in the manufacturing of semiconductors. (Photo by Brian Busher)

By Michael Parker

ALBANY, N.Y. (Feb. 22, 2024) — The University at Albany’s College of Nanotechnology, Science, and Engineering (CNSE) is partnering with software developer DeepHow to adapt and deploy the company’s next-generation artificial intelligence video training platform.

DeepHow is a tool for mastering technician and engineering skills used in the operation of mission-critical facilities such as data centers and cleanrooms used in the advanced manufacture of semiconductor devices. The tool will be implemented by CNSE’s Department of Nanoscale Science & Engineering (DNSE) to expand learning opportunities for students, employees and trainees at NYCREATES’ Albany NanoTech complex.

The partnership will build upon millions of dollars in prior and ongoing investments by the National Science Foundation, U.S. Department of Commerce, New York State Energy Research and Development Authority and Empire State Development in the development and delivery of experiential learning opportunities for technicians and engineers to support digital manufacturing and energy efficient facility operations.

“DeepHow enables rapid, efficient and low-cost production of training videos that utilize AI to automatically disaggregate the sequence of instructional procedures to easily modify the flow, such as reordering sequence of steps, content and delivery within an existing video recorded in the actual work environment,” said Michael Fancher, senior research associate at CNSE and director of the NYS Center for Advanced Technology in Nanoelectronics. “The training segments and sub-segments can be easily selected by users much like YouTube, with content seamlessly configured for delivery on terminals, hand-held devices, or within learning management systems.”

CNSE plans to use DeepHow’s AI-powered platform to expand curriculum content available through the established Career Alignment Platform (CAP) application. CNSE developed CAP, an innovative open-access application, to provide new and existing workers with pathways into the broad array of career opportunities within the semiconductor industry. Pathways include facilities and utilities, equipment and support and process devices.

“DeepHow’s exciting new platform will engage student learners and connect them to career pathways within the semiconductor industry,” said UAlbany Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs Carol H. Kim. “Coupled with our AI Plus initiative, the DeepHow platform is another tool that builds upon UAlbany’s holistic approach to integrating teaching and learning about AI across our academic and research enterprise.”

“One of the great challenges in workforce development is training individuals to effectively and efficiently address the rapid growth of new technology, including how to deal with challenging situations that should ideally never occur," said CNSE Dean Michel J. Grimm. "With the combination of the AI-supported DeepHow training platform and the knowledge and experience in semiconductor manufacturing of DNSE, students will be able to obtain on-the-job experience before they even start in a position, while our country’s best STEM workers can expand beyond their real world experience to continue to be successful in their careers.  Simulation – especially when it can be enhanced by AI – is at the forefront of engineering and technical education, research, and system development.  We are excited about this partnership and its ability to enhance the educational programs that we offer through CNSE.”

The DeepHow modules provide a recorded, easy to update and readily deployable inventory of instructional content for learning. Initial work with CNSE will focus on enhancing the existing CAP course curriculum content to advance best practices in facility operations and semiconductor manufacture. This includes instructional content for the system-fault use-case scenarios that DNSE uses to enhance student learning. The team is planning additional steps to advance the use of DeepHow’s AI-assisted video training application in the semiconductor industry and energy efficient building operations.

“We intend to leverage CNSE’s substantial investment in learning and production technology to advance worker performance by combining numerous data analytics tools currently in use at CNSE,” Fancher said.

“This partnership with UAlbany will not only advance the development of training tools specifically serving on-the-Job training in semiconductor, but also continue the DeepHow’s five-year track record of advancing AI applications in the skilled workforce industry,” said DeepHow co-founder and CEO Sam Zheng.

DeepHow currently works with major industry leaders such as GE, Siemens, Georgia-Pacific, Stanley Black & Decker, Unilever, Nestle, Energizer and more. 

About DeepHow

DeepHow is an award-winning AI-powered, video-centric platform for skilled workforce training. AI underpins the entire DeepHow platform to successfully digitize and transfer know-how 10x faster and 40 percent more effectively. Headquartered in Detroit and founded in 2018, DeepHow bridges the gap between process documentation and skills management and up-skilling, helping enterprise organizations meet future workforce readiness goals.