On March 31, 2021, ALJ Dee Lord issued a notice of initial determination (“ID”) in Certain Lithium-Ion Battery Cells, Battery Modules, Battery Packs, Components Thereof, and Products Containing the Same (Inv. No. 337-TA-1181). According to the notice, the ALJ found no violation of section 337.

By way of background, this investigation was instituted on October 29, 2019 based on a complaint filed by LG Chem, Ltd. of the Republic of Korea; LG Chem Michigan Inc. of Holland, Michigan; and Toray Industries, lnc. of Japan alleging violation of section 337 by Respondents SK Innovation Co., Ltd. of the Republic of Korea and SK Battery America, Inc. of Atlanta, Georgia through the importation and/or sale in the U.S. of certain lithium-ion battery cells, battery modules, battery packs, components thereof (including battery separators and powderous electrode active material), and vehicles containing same by reason of infringement of one or more claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 7,662,517 (“the ’517 patent”); 7,638,241 (“the ’241 patent”); (“the ’152 patent”); and 7,771,877 (“the ’877 patent”).

According to the notice, ALJ Lord determined there is no violation of section 337 based on the following conclusions of law:

  • No accused products have been shown to infringe any claims of the ’517 patent.
  • The domestic industry requirement has not been satisfied with respect to any claims of the ’517 patent.
  • No claims of the ’517 patent have been shown to be invalid.
  • No accused products have been shown to infringe any claims of the ’241 patent.
  • The technical prong of the domestic industry requirement is satisfied with respect to claims 1, 2, 3, 24, and 25 of the ’241 patent.
  • Claims 1, 2, 3, 24, and 25 of the ’241 patent are invalid as obvious in view of certain prior art.
  • Certain accused products infringe claims 1, 2, 3, 5, 16, 19, and 20 of the ’152 patent.
  • The technical prong of the domestic industry requirement is satisfied with respect to claims 1, 2, 3, 5, 16, 19, and 20 of the ’152 patent.
  • Claims 1, 2, 3, 5, 16, 19, and 20 of the ’152 patent are invalid as anticipated or obvious in view of certain prior art.
  • Certain accused products infringe claims 5, 18, and 26 of the ’877 patent.
  • The technical prong of the domestic industry requirement is satisfied with respect to claims 5 and 26 of the ’877 patent.
  • Claims 5 and 26 of the ’877 patent are invalid as obvious in view of certain prior art.

A public version of the ID containing more detailed information will issue after all parties have submitted their proposed redactions to the ALJ.