Valence Technology Inc., a U.S.-based global manufacturer of advanced energy storage solutions for commercial applications, has prevailed in seeking the dismissal of an appeal by Hydro-Quebec (HQ) of a decision of the European Patent Office revoking a HQ European patent. The EPO Patent corresponded to the primary HQ patent being litigated in the Western District of Texas Federal Court (Austin). The patent is related to lithium metal phosphate technology.
In December 2008, the EPO Opposition Board revoked the grant of the patent based on evidence presented by Valence showing that the patent lacked novelty. The Board’s decision revoking HQ’s European
Patent eliminated any risk that HQ could assert the European Patent against Valence’s proprietary lithium iron magnesium phosphate cathode material, a critical material for the next generation of advanced batteries. HQ filed an appeal of the 2008 revocation of the European Patent. The appeal hearing was heard and decided on February 2, 2012, by an EPO Board of Appeal, which dismissed HQ’s appeal. As a result of the decision, European Patent number 0904607 has been revoked by the EPO in its entirety. Valence was represented in the opposition and the appeal by Dr. Claus Beckmann of the German Intellectual Property Law firm Kraus & Weisert.
“This decision removes any possible patent infringement claim under the Hydro-Quebec European Patent, thereby affirming Valence’s unrestricted right to market its unique, patented lithium phosphate powder batteries in Europe. Valence’s intellectual property is a key asset and we intend to vigorously protect our worldwide patent estate,” said Roger Williams, Valence’s General Counsel.
Valence Technology, Inc.
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