Appeals court reverses outcome of Osram-Dominant dispute

A federal appeals court says that the ITC made an error in an LED patent case, and that Osram patents were infringed by Dominant Semiconductors.

The US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit has ruled that the International Trade Commission (ITC) made an error in its claim construction of Osram GmbH's patents relating to phosphors used with white LEDs. As a result, says the appeals court, the patents were infringed by Dominant Semiconductors, a rival LED maker based in Malaysia.

The ITC decisions were announced in early 2006, following a complaint made by Osram – see Dominant also claims victory in Osram patent case (Feb 06) and Dominant clarifies outcome of Osram patent case (Mar 06).

The issue in question was how to calculate the mean diameter of phosphor grains contained in the LEDs. The appeals court said that the ITC should have calculated the mean diameter using a number-based approach, rather than a volume-based approach.

As a result, the court said that Osram's LEDs were covered by the patents under discussion (the ITC had ruled previously that this was not the case), and that the patents were infringed by Dominant's "Normal Series LED" phosphors.

The US patents in the case are 6,066,861; 6,245,259; 6,277,301; 6,592,780 and 6,613,247.

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