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Court rules Fairchild infringed Power Integrations patents

Posted: 06 Mar 2014 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Fairchild? patent? infringement? Power Integrations?

Fairchild Semiconductor has been convicted of patent infringement on two power supply ICs owned by Power Integrations. The North California district court ordered Fairchild to pay at least $105 million in damages.

Power Integrations said that based on the findings, the court was wilful to triple the level of damages awarded by the jury. The jury also denied all counterclaims by Fairchild alleging patent infringement by Power Integrations.

Power Integrations intended to seek a permanent injunction against Fairchild selling more than 140 chips that Power Integrations claimed are implicated in the decision.

The size of the damages claim relates to the long-running nature of the dispute which dates back to 2004, although the current case was brought in 2009 after two patents were validated by the United States Patent and Trademark Office.

The jury found that Power Integrations did not infringe the Fairchild patent but that several power supplies containing chips made by System General Corp., a subsidiary of Fairchild, infringed U.S. Patent Number 6,212,079 and 6,538,908.

The latest decision follows three previous findings of infringement against Fairchild and its System General subsidiary in cases brought by Power Integrations.

"Today's decision marks the fourth time Fairchild and its SG subsidiary have been found to infringe our patents. We hope this latest finding and the accompanying damage award will cause Fairchild to finally re-examine their business practices and begin respecting the intellectual property that we have worked so hard to develop over the past 25 years," said Balu Balakrishnan, president and CEO of Power Integrations, in a statement.

Fairchild was approached for comment but had not responded by the time this article was posted.

- Peter Clarke
??EE Times Europe

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