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CAFC Updates


By September 15, 2022March 7th, 2024No Comments

Polaris filed a complaint accusing NVIDIA of infringing certain claims of U.S. Patent Nos. 6,532,505 and  7,405,993, and NVIDIA responded by filing IPR petitions challenging certain claims in those patents. The Board issued its final written decision holding all challenged claims unpatentable. Polaris appealed both decisions, but when Polaris and NVIDIA settled, NVIDIA withdrew from the appeals, the PTO intervened to defend the Board’s decisions, and the CAFC vacated the Board’s decisions and remanded. On remand, the Board suspended the IPRs, and Polaris and NVIDIA filed a joint motion to terminate the proceedings. While those motions were pending at the Board, the Supreme Court vacated the CAFC’s decision, reinstating the Board’s final written decisions. Polaris argued in the reinstated appeals that the CAFC should vacate and remand for the Board to grant termination, but the CAFC remanded allowing the parties to seek further action by the Director. The Board determined that termination was not appropriate because the final written decision in each of the cases was not vacated, and determined that the appropriate course of action on remand was Director review, thereby effectively denying the joint motions to terminate. Polaris filed requests for Director rehearing, but when rehearing was denied, Polaris filed a motion for the CAFC to vacate the Board’s final written decision and remand for termination. Polaris first argues that the Board erred by failing to grant the joint motions to terminate filed in both proceedings before the Board on remand. However, the CAFC finds: 1) that because the Board decided the merits of the IPR before Polaris filed its motion to terminate, Polaris’s motion was untimely; 2) that the Board properly exercised its discretion to terminate or continue the IPR proceeding; and 3) the Board’s decisions to continue these IPRs was not arbitrary since the last sentence of § 317(a) gives the Board discretion to either terminate the review or proceed to a final written decision. Polaris also argues that the Board misconstrued the term “memory chip” in the IPR involving the ’993 patent. However, because Polaris points to no persuasive evidence supporting its proposed claim constructions, the CAFC adopts the Board’s constructions and affirms its unpatentability determination. Finally, Polaris argues the Board misconstrued the term “resource tag buffer” in the IPR involving the ’505 patent to include multiple buffers, not just a single buffer. However, the CAFC sees no error in the Board’s adoption of this construction, which is supported by and consistent with the specification. Thus, the CAFC affirms the Board’s denial of Polaris’s motions to terminate and its unpatentability determinations regarding the ’505 and ’993 patents.

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