Nitride Semiconductor Co Ltd of Tokushima, Japan has filed a patent infringement lawsuit with the US District Court for the District of Minnesota against Digi-Key Corp (trading as Digi-Key Electronics), which sells ultraviolet light-emitting diode (UV-LED) products on the Internet manufactured by Rayvio Corp of Haywood, CA, USA.
Nitride is seeking injunction, damages and accounting, asserting that Digi-Key infringes its US patent 6,861,270 (‘Method for Manufacturing Gallium Nitride Compound Semiconductor and Light Emitting Element’) by selling UV-LED products manufactured by RayVio. The patented invention is said to contribute significantly to improving the light-emitting efficacy of LEDs. Previously, on 23 May, Nitride filed a lawsuit against RayVio in the US District Court, Northern District of California, alleging infringement of the same patent.
Nitride says that, with professor Shiro Sakai at Tokushima University, in 2000 it succeeded in developing the first highly efficient UV-LED, and has since continued to manufacture and sell UV-LED, involving huge investment in R&D. The firm says that it will take resolute action against infringers in any country where appropriate and necessary to protect its patents and other intellectual property rights.