In a time when many U.S. companies are placing manufacturing facilities in places like India and China to save on costs, Texas Instruments has built a new semiconductor fabrication plant in Richardson, Texas.

The plant, named RFAB and expected to be fully operational by summer, combines the best practices in cost controls, engineering ingenuity, corporate community relations, and environmental sustainability. With RFAB, Texas Instruments made every effort to slash costs by incorporating energy efficiencies into nearly every component of the facility’s design and construction.

For example, to reduce cooling costs in the 220,000-square-foot building, engineers designed a plastic membrane that reflects 85 percent of the sun’s radiation from the roof. In addition, the windows in the administrative wing of the facility have been designed with special shelves that effectively reflect light far into room interiors, reducing the need for artificial lighting.

RFAB also has been designed with straight ducts and pipes rather than curved plumbing, allowing improved fluid, air and waste flows. The plant uses recycled water to run cooling equipment and irrigate indoor and outdoor landscaping.