Intel to close Cambridge research lab

Intel said it will close its research facility in Cambridge, England, the only such lab Intel runs outside of the U.S.

Intel Corp. will close its lab at Cambridge University in December, researchers learned on Wednesday.

The lab in Cambridge, England, is one of four that Intel runs in collaboration with universities to work on long term projects, and the only such facility outside the U.S. Researchers in Cambridge focused on wireless and optical networking and technology to support distributed applications.

The closure is part of a company-wide cost-cutting program begun earlier this year, said Chris Hogg, an Intel spokesman.

It won't diminish Intel's focus on future technologies, however, he said. "Long-term research is still an essential part of Intel's technology pipeline," Hogg said.

The lab will close in the beginning of December. Hogg couldn't say how many staff work at the center.

Intel announced that it would open the lab in March 2003 with a staff of 20 to 25 researchers. At the time, lab researchers said that the facility would offer Intel a way to collaborate closely with European researchers and participate in projects funded by the European Union.

The Web site for the Intel research lab at Cambridge is still available and includes biographies of a few researchers and details of some of the projects they've worked on.

Intel's three other university labs are at the University of California at Berkeley, Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh, and the University of Washington in Seattle.

Cambridge is a hub in Europe for chip research and design, and is home to Arm Ltd. and CSR PLC, as well as other research facilities for worldwide chip companies.

Faced with strong competition from Advanced Micro Devices Inc., Intel earlier this year began a broad restructuring program including total layoffs of about 10,500 people.

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