Archive for November, 2017

Clean Tech in Court: Green Patent Complaint Update

November 27th, 2017

Several new green patent complaints were filed in September and October in the areas of advanced batteries, green cleaning solvents, and LED lighting.

 

Advanced Batteries

LG Chem, Ltd. et al. v. Amperex Technology Limited

LG Chem filed a lawsuit against Amperex asserting three patents relating to separator technology for advanced batteries.

The complaint was filed in U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan on October 25, 2017 and lists U.S. Patent Nos. 7,662,517 (‘517 Patent), 7,638,241 (‘241 Patent) and 7,709,152 (‘152 Patent).

The ‘517 Patent is entitled “Organic/inorganic composite microporous membrane and electrochemical device prepared thereby” and directed to an organic/inorganic composite porous separator comprising (a) a polyolefin-based separator substrate; and (b) an active layer formed by coating at least one region selected from the group consisting of a surface of the substrate and a part of pores present in the substrate with a mixture of inorganic particles and a binder polymer.

Entitled “Organic/inorganic composite separator having morphology gradient, manufacturing method thereof and electrochemical device containing the same,” the ‘241 Patent is directed to an organic/inorganic composite separator including: a porous substrate having pores; and a porous active layer containing a mixture of inorganic particles and a binder polymer with which at least one surface of the porous substrate is coated.

The ‘152 Patent is entitled “Organic/inorganic composite separator having porous active coating layer and electrochemical device containing the same” and directed to an organic/inorganic composite separator including (a) a polyolefin porous substrate having pores; and (b) a porous active layer containing a mixture of inorganic particles and a binder polymer.

The accused products include ATL’s 844297, 425882, 346176, 494397 and A1445 battery cells.

 

Green Cleaning Solvents

GreenEarth Cleaning, LLC v. Benito Dry Cleaners LLC

This action for patent infringement, trademark infringement, and breach of contract was filed October 9, 2017 in the U.S. District Court for the Western District of Missouri.

Although the complaint lists nine patents, there is only one count of patent infringement asserting U.S. Patent No. 5,942,007 (‘007 Patent).

The ‘007 Patent is entitled “Dry cleaning method and solvent” and directed to dry cleaning methods comprising the steps of immersing clothes in a dry cleaning fluid including a cyclic siloxane composition, agitating the clothes in the composition, and then removing the cyclic siloxane composition by centrifugal action and air circulation.

According to the Abstract of the ‘007 Patent, the “cyclic-siloxane-based solvent allows the system to result in an environmentally friendly process which is, also, more effective in cleaning fabrics and the like than any known prior system.”

GreenEarth alleges that Benito breached its license agreement with GreenEarth.

 

LED Lighting

Seoul Semiconductor Co. et al. v. Archipelago Lighting, Inc.

On September 15, 2017, Seoul sued Archipelago in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California, alleging infringement of twelve LED and LED lighting patents.

The asserted patents are:

U.S. Patent No. 9,627,435, entitled “Light emitting device”

U.S. Patent No. 9,093,627, entitled “Light emitting diode and method of fabricating the same”

U.S. Patent No. 9,577,157, entitled “Light emitting diode chip having distributed Bragg reflector and method of fabricating the same”

U.S. Patent No. 7,700,960, entitled “Light emitting diode with ITO layer and method for fabricating the same”

U.S. Patent No. 8,168,988, entitled “Light emitting element with a plurality of cells bonded, method of manufacturing the same, and light emitting device using the same”

U.S. Patent No. 8,860,331, entitled “Light emitting device for AC power operation”

U.S. Patent No. 8,829,552, entitled “Light emitting device”

U.S. Patent No. 8,716,946, entitled “Light emitting device for AC power operation”

U.S. Patent No. 9,716,210, entitled “Light emitting diode and method of fabricating the same”

U.S. Patent No. 7,951,626, entitled “Light emitting device and method of manufacturing the same”

U.S. Patent No. 9,450,155, entitled “Light emitting device having wavelength converting layer”

U.S. Patent No. 8,664,638, entitled “Light-emitting diode having an interlayer with high voltage density and method for manufacturing the same

The complaint lists the accused products as Archipelago’s A19F6027-2 and LTCA12C32524K1 bulbs.

Polaris PowerLED Technologies, LLC v. Samsung Electronics America, Inc.

Polaris has asserted U.S. Patent No. 8,223,117 (‘117 Patent) against Samsung, alleging that several Galaxy mobile phones and tablets infringe the patent.

The ‘117 Patent is entitled “Method and apparatus to control display brightness with ambient light correction” and directed to an ambient light sensor which produces a current signal that varies linearly with the level of ambient light.

The current signal is multiplied by a user dimming preference to generate a brightness control signal that automatically compensates for ambient light variations in visual information display systems. The multiplying function provides noticeable user dimming control at relatively high ambient light levels.

The complaint was filed October 27, 2017 in federal court in Marshall, Texas.

Bluestone Innovations, LLC v. Osram Sylvania, Inc.

In this lawsuit, Bluestone alleges infringement of  U.S. Patent No. 6,163,557 (‘557 Patent).

The ‘557 Patent is entitled “Fabrication of group III-V nitrides on mesas” and directed to group III-V nitride films fabricated on mesas patterned either on substrates such as sapphire substrates or on group III-V nitride layers grown on substrates. The mesas provide reduced area surfaces for epitaxially growing group III-V nitride films to reduce thermal film stresses in the films to minimize cracking.

The complaint was filed October 17, 2017 in federal court in San Francisco and lists as accused products various brands and models of LED lightbulbs with epitaxial film.

 

Epistar Corporation v. All Star Lighting Supplies, Inc.

Epistar sued All Star in U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey on October 13, 2017.

The complaint asserts infringement of eight patents:

U.S. Patent No. 7,355,208, titled “Nitride-Based Semiconductor Element And Method Of Forming Nitride-Based Semiconductor”

U.S. Patent No. 7,489,068, titled “Light Emitting Device”

U.S. Patent No. 7,560,738, titled “Light-Emitting Diode Array Having An Adhesive Layer”

U.S. Patent No. 8,791,467, titled “Light Emitting Diode And Method Of Making The Same”

U.S. Patent No. 9,065,022, titled, “Light Emitting Apparatus”

U.S. Patent No. 9,257,604, titled “Light-Emitting Device Having A Patterned Surface”

U.S. Patent No. 9,488,321, titled “Illumination Device With Inclined Light Emitting Element Disposed On A Transparent Substrate” and

U.S. Patent No. 9,664,340, titled “Light Emitting Device”

The accused products are All Star’s LED filament bulbs.

 

Blackbird Tech LLC v. Feit Electrical Company, Inc.

Blackbird Tech LLC v. Makita U.S.A., Inc.

Blackbird Tech initiated two new lawsuits September 25 and 28, 2017 in U.S. District Court for the Central District of California.

The asserted patent in the Feit suit is U.S. Patent No. 7,114,834 (‘834 Patent).  Entitled “LED lighting apparatus,” the ‘834 Patent is directed to a light comprising a housing, a plurality of LED lights coupled in an array inside of the housing, and a reflective protrusion for reflecting light from the LED lights out of the housing.

The LED array receives a consistent flow of DC current that will not result in the LED lights burning out. To prevent the LED array from burning out there is also a current regulator for controlling a current flowing through this LED array.

Blackbird accuses Makita of infringing U.S. Patent No. 9,620,989, entitled “Rechargeable battery accessories” and directed to battery pack accessories including a battery power gauge adapted to be applied to a battery pack, a light adapted to the battery pack such that the battery pack can be used as a flashlight when needed, and a connector that can be used for charging the battery pack or to allow the battery pack to charge a device.

GPB Makes List of Top 75 Business Law Blogs

November 9th, 2017

I’m pleased to announce that Green Patent Blog has been honored as one of the top business law blogs.

Compiled by Feedspot, the Top 75 Business Law Blogs were selected from thousands of IP blogs.  The list reflects rankings based on a number of criteria, including Google reputation and search ranking, social media influence and popularity, quality and consistency of posts, and review by Feedspot’s editorial team.

GPB made the list of 75 top blogs, coming in at #32.

Congratulations to the top five:  Law 4 Small Business, Strictly Business, San Diego Corporate Law, Business Law Post, and The IP Law Blog – Copyright Law.

Thank you Feedspot.  It’s nice to get the recognition, but the real satisfaction of blogging comes when someone tells me my blog has served as a valuable tool for research and publication of new works on clean tech IP, and the real pleasure is in creating and publishing a well-crafted post on an original idea.