Heraeus Photovoltaics expanded its intellectual property portfolio as it acquired three patent families from the Japanese company Murata Manufacturing. The expanded portfolio covers Giga Solar Materials Corporation’s No. 610 Front Side Silver Paste Product so Heraeus added the product to its patent infringement lawsuit against Giga Solar.
Heraeus’ newly acquired patents are on the basis of the international patent applications WO2014050703, WO2014045900 and WO2014050704 refer to metallization pastes, which contain glass compounds (glass frit) with specific material combinations basing on Tellurium-Oxide. Glass frit is a key component in the formulation of metallization pastes, enabling the electrical contact formation between the silicon substrate and the metal electrode. Tellurium containing pastes have demonstrated improved electrical contact to silicon solar cells over non tellurium containing paste while they are lead-free and more environmentally friendly.
Heraeus added Giga Solar’s No. 610 paste as one of the Alleged Infringing Products in the Patent Infringement Litigation against Giga Solar Materials Corporation in Taiwan. On June 10, 2015 Heraeus filed a complaint with the Taiwan Intellectual Property Court against Giga Solar Materials Corporation for patent infringement of Heraeus' Patent No. I432539.
“Fair competition encourages the development and improvement of technology which benefits the entire industry,” noted Andreas Liebheit, Head of Heraeus Photovoltaics Global Business Unit. "It is important for us and the industry to challenge potential violators who can potential hinder the technological advancement of the PV industry. If suppliers are not able to gain full economic benefit from investments in technology and intellectual property, then why should anyone invest? We will defend all our technology for the long term benefit of the industry."
Heraeus seeks damages for infringement, including treble damages for willful infringement, and a permanent injunction to prevent the manufacture, use, offer for sale and sale of Giga Solar's front side silver paste products (including No.590, 590A, 600, 610 and 620).