Opting to file patent infringement complaints with the International Trade Commission (ITC), rather than through the judicial courts, Westinghouse Solar said in statement that both Canadian Solar and Zep Solar, in particular, are infringing two Westinghouse Solar patents – US patent numbers 7,406,800 and 7,987,641.
“Over the past few years we have worked successfully with several Chinese and Japanese companies who have licensed our technology,” said Barry Cinnamon, CEO of Westinghouse Solar. “We have active, ongoing discussions with companies to license our technology in an effort to bring installation costs down on a more widespread basis throughout the solar industry. Unfortunately, we believe that Zep Solar, Canadian Solar and others, have not appropriately recognized Westinghouse Solar's intellectual property rights by incorporating a system – the Zep System – that we contend infringes certain of our patents. As a consequence, we have turned to the ITC to address this issue.”
Westinghouse Solar said it was seeking relief, including an investigation of Zep Solar and Canadian Solar, a permanent exclusion order barring certain Zep Solar and Canadian Solar products from being imported into the United States, as well as a cease and desist order prohibiting the importation, sale, or advertising of these products.
Westinghouse Solar said that the ITC could initiate a formal investigation on behalf of the U.S. Government within the next 30 days.
Canadian Solar and Zep Solar have yet to respond to the complaint at the time of reporting.