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Nitride Semi Pursues UV LED Patent Case

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Company files amended complaint in the US District Court for the District of Minnesota against distributor Digi-key Corp

On Aug.20th, Nitride Semiconductors, a developer of ultraviolet LED technology, announced that it has successfully filed an amended complaint against Digi-key Corp, a global electrical components distributor, in the US District Court for the District of Minnesota, asserting infringement of Nitride's UV LED patent.

According to the amended complaint, UV LED products being supplied by various LED companies - such as Lite-On Semiconductor, Luminus Devices, and Vishay Intertechnology - are infringing Nitride's UV LED patent.

Nitride is one of the earliest developers of UV-LEDs. With Shiro Sakai at Tokushima University, Nitride succeeded in developing highly efficient UV-LEDs as early as 2000. This was the first time such a breakthrough in UV LED technology had been achieved, says the company. Nitride has continued to manufacture and sell UV-LEDs thereafter, and has invested enormously in R&D to develop and enhance its UV-LED technology.

To protect its UV LED patented technology, Nitride initiated its patent enforcement campaign starting in 2017. By virtue of such efforts, a judgment was issued out of the US District Court for the Northern District of California in favor of Nitride and against RayVio Corporation in 2020, who infringed Nitride's UV LED patent. That judgment was also in Nitride's favour with respect to the validity of its patent. The US Patent & Trademark Office has also confirmed the validity of the key claims of Nitride's patent in its final judgment on an Inter Parte Review case filed by RayVio.

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