Hanwha Q CELLS files patent infringement complaints with the Federal Court of Australia against JinkoSolar and LONGi Solar, following legal action in the U.S. and Germany
Hanwha Q CELLS Australia Pty. Ltd., together with Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp., a leading photovoltaic manufacturer of high performance solar cells and modules (collectively, “Hanwha Q CELLS”), today announced that, Hanwha Q CELLS filed patent infringement complaints with the Federal Court of Australia against JinkoSolar and LONGi Solar. This follows an announcement on 5 March, 2019, that Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. and Hanwha Q CELLS USA Inc. filed a patent infringement complaint with the U.S. International Trade Commission (“ITC”) and Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. filed related patent infringement complaints with the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware against JinkoSolar, LONGi Solar, and REC Group, and that Hanwha Q CELLS GmbH filed patent infringement complaints with the Regional Court of Düsseldorf against JinkoSolar and REC Group.
The Federal Court complaints allege that JinkoSolar and LONGi Solar are importing and selling solar cells and modules that infringe Hanwha Q CELLS’s Australian patent rights. In particular, the complaints allege that JinkoSolar and LONGi Solar have incorporated Hanwha Q CELLS’s patented passivation technology—which plays an important role in improving the efficiency and performance of solar cells—into their solar cells. Hanwha Q CELLS began manufacturing Q.ANTUM solar cells using this passivation technology in 2012 and has produced more than 2.5 billion such cells globally. Hanwha Q CELLS seeks an order to stop JinkoSolar and LONGi Solar from importing, marketing, and selling the infringing products in Australia.
Australia is one of the global leaders in the solar energy sector and Hanwha Q CELLS is fully committed to further strengthening this important industry. Hanwha Q CELLS’s innovative technology improves the efficiency and performance of solar cells, making solar energy more accessible and affordable for Australian consumers and businesses. Hanwha Q CELLS’s presence in Australia goes back to 2009 and it is proud that last year approximately one in 10 panels installed in the country’s residential and commercial segments were made by Hanwha Q CELLS. The legal actions Hanwha Q CELLS is taking will protect its ability to innovate and reinforce its reputation as a leading supplier of high-quality products and a trusted business partner to its customers across Australia.
“Intellectual property laws exist to incentivise innovation and protect innovations from being unfairly used, and we will vigorously defend our technology from infringement,” said Hee Cheul (Charles) Kim, Chief Executive Officer of Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. “Our high-quality photovoltaic products have established us as an industry leader, and we are proud of our legacy of innovation. The products supplied by these two companies are using technology that we believe is protected by our Australian patent and we have taken these actions both to protect our property rights and to give the market confidence that research and development initiatives to develop future technologies can continue. We are not prepared to tolerate the unauthorised distribution in Australia of products that incorporate our patented technology.”
The patent claims asserted by Hanwha Q CELLS are not restricted to any particular method of manufacture, such as atomic layer deposition (ALD) or plasma-enhanced chemical vapor deposition (PECVD). Instead, the asserted claims of Australian patent no. 2008323025 (and its equivalents in the U.S. and Germany) are directed to a solar cell structure with a first dielectric layer including aluminum oxide and a second dielectric layer that contains hydrogen. The patented technology can be applied in many ways. A solar cell employing what is known as Passivated Emitter Rear Cell (PERC) technology is only one type of solar cells that may use technology covered by Australian patent no. 2008323025 and its global equivalents.
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About Hanwha Q CELLS Australia Pty. Ltd.
Hanwha Q CELLS Australia Pty. Ltd. is located in Sydney, Australia and provides high quality photovoltaic modules and solutions to the Australian market. It is a subsidiary of Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd., one of the world’s largest and most recognized photovoltaic manufacturers, known for its high-performance, high-quality solar cells and modules. Hanwha Q CELLS Australia Pty. Ltd. has been present in Australia since 2009 and in 2019 was awarded the title of Australia’s Top Brand PV by internationally recognized research institute EuPD for the fourth consecutive year. For more information, please visit www.q-cells.com/au
About Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp.
Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. is a photovoltaic manufacturer with business operations in South Korea and manufacturing facilities in the United States (Hanwha Q CELLS USA Inc.) and South Korea. Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. offers a full spectrum of photovoltaic products, applications, and solutions, from cells and modules to kits, and large-scale solar power plants. Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp. provides excellent services and long-term partnerships to its customers in the utility, commercial, governmental, and residential markets.
About Hanwha Q CELLS USA Inc.
Hanwha Q CELLS USA Inc. is located in Dalton, Georgia, and is a solar module manufacturing facility. It is a subsidiary of Hanwha Q CELLS & Advanced Materials Corp., one of the world’s largest and most recognized photovoltaic manufacturers.
About Hanwha Q CELLS GmbH
Hanwha Q CELLS GmbH is the German subsidiary of Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd. Hanwha Q CELLS GmbH is responsible for the R&D, sale, and installation of a full spectrum of solar components—from modules and kits to systems and large-scale solar power plants—across all European markets, as well as Latin America, the Middle East, and North Africa. Hanwha Q CELLS GmbH’s parent company, Hanwha Q CELLS Co., Ltd., has diverse international manufacturing facilities in Malaysia and China.
This press release contains forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements can be identified by terminology such as “will,” “expects,” “anticipates,” “future,” “intends,” “plans,” “believes,” “estimates,” and similar statements. Among other things, the quotations from management in this press release and the Hanwha Q CELLS’s operations and business outlook contain forward-looking statements. Such statements involve certain risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in or suggested by the forward-looking statements. Except as required by law, Hanwha Q CELLS does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events, or otherwise.