Sydney, 17 November, 2020 – Hanwha Q CELLS (“Q CELLS”), a globally renowned solar technology leader and total energy solutions provider, can today confirm that China’s Re-examination and Invalidation Department of the Patent Office, CNIPA, has upheld the validity of the Company’s patents on PERC (‘971 patent) and Passivation (‘407 patent) following a challenge from LONGi Solar (“LONGi”).
In November this year, the Chines Patent Office ruled in favour of Q CELLS on two patent litigations lodged by LONGi in July and August of 2019 against the company, alleging that its patents were invalid. The Patent Office’s ruling, which upheld the validity of patents ‘971 and ‘407, reaffirmed the originality of Q CELLS’ leading-edge proprietary technologies.
Q CELLS has already won a litigation filed against three companies – JinkoSolar GmbH, REC Solar EMEA GmbH and LONGi Solar Technologie GmbH – at the Regional Court of Düsseldorf in Germany on June 16 for PERC (‘971, equivalent European patent EP 2 220 689) patent infringements. Following the court ruling, sales and imports of the infringing products have been prohibited in Germany.
The results in China add to a 28 September, 2020 ruling by the Regional Düsseldorf Court against JinkoSolar, which has ordered the manufacturer to stop offering, selling or importing modules that infringe on Q CELLS’ European Patent, EP 2 220 689 (EP ‘689 patent) in the European market. Furthermore, last month, Q CELLS initiated penalty proceedings on September 28, 2020 against JinkoSolar.
Patent ‘407, the other patent validated by China’s Patent Office, is also concerned with the passivation layer technology. This innovative technology increases solar cell efficiency by the passivation layer, properly combining the chemical passivation sublayer and the field-effect passivation sublayer to increase a solar cell’s efficiency.
Q CELLS is anticipating favourable outcomes in ongoing PERC patent trials including the USA, Australia and further actions in Europe.
Q CELLS’ decision to enforce the German Court’s ruling has been based on the company’s strategic judgment and assessment. Q CELLS will not tolerate any activities that infringe the company’s intellectual property. Accordingly, Q CELLS remains fully determined to protect its patent rights.
“Protection of intellectual property rights and strict compliance with IP laws are more important than ever for our fast-evolving solar industry,” said Q CELLS Australia’s Head of Business, Peter Bae. “We welcome the recent decisions by the German Courts and the Chinese Patent Office and are confident that we will witness a similar outcome here in Australia.
“We must uphold fair competition throughout the industry. Q CELLS is internationally recognised for the strength of its R&D programs. Protecting the company’s intellectual property rights is a prerequisite for ensuring that the next generation of technological innovations continues to stem from genuine, long-term R&D efforts.”