CHICAGO—AddyHart P.C., today announced the favorable settlement for its client Thales Visionix Inc. (“Thales”) in Thales’ patent infringement case against the US government relating to helmet-mounted display systems (HMDS) developed for use in the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter.
Thales Visionix, a division of Clarksburg, MD-based Thales Defense & Security, Inc., had sued the federal government in 2014 in the Court of Federal Claims under 28 U.S.C. § 1498(a), claiming unauthorized use or manufacture of the inventions claimed in U.S. Patent No. 6,474,159 (“the ’159 Patent), which relates to motion tracking using inertial sensors that is done in the F-35 HMDS. Elbit Systems of America, the government contractor that supplies the F-35 HMDS, was joined as a third-party defendant to the case, Thales Visionix, Inc. v. United States, 14-cv-513 (Ct. of Fed. Claims).
“AddyHart is very pleased that this long-running case has reached a successful conclusion and that Thales’ remarkable advances of the HDMS for the F-35 embodied in the ’159 Patent have been respected,” noted Addy on the settlement’s being approved. “It has become increasingly difficult for patent-holders to secure their rights in recent years, and we only regret it took so long for Thales to get here.”
The parties fought vigorously for the succeeding seven years, the litigation expanding to include an invalidity action at the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office Patent Trial and Appeal Board and two trips to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Once those additional proceedings were resolved with the ’159 Patent remaining valid, the original Court of Federal Claims case proceeded with an Order compelling Elbit to disclose the code used for the HMDS and a Markman decision on the meaning of disputed patent claim terms.
Earlier this year the parties engaged in a mediation before Senior Judge Eric J. Bruggink of the U.S. Court of Federal Claims. Settlement terms were agreed to in the amount of US $10,000,000. Formal filing of the agreement was disclosed on November 9, 2021.
Thales Visionix develops industry-leading head-worn displays and motion tracking technologies. The company designs, develops, and delivers “game-changing” inertial tracking, and sensor fusion technologies and how this information is displayed to the user. Their solutions improve the way users operate in high-performance aerospace, defense, and industrial environments through the use of integrated situational awareness systems.
Meredith Addy, Charles A. Pannell III and Benjamin Cappel of Atlanta-based AddyHart P.C. were counsel to Thales Visionix, Inc., assisted by Daniel Konieczny and Katherine O’Brien of Chicago-based Tabet DiVito & Rothstein LLC. Co-founder of AddyHart P.C., Addy leads the firm’s IP litigation practice group and has been trying cases across a range of industries for over 25 years. Her experience includes more than 80 cases in the federal district courts and more than 100 appeals to the US Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit. Addy has also guided several Abbreviated New Drug Applications (ANDA) pharmaceutical cases under the Hatch-Waxman Act through trial and appeal, and handles cases before the Court of Federal Claims and the Patent Trial and Appeal Board of the USPTO.
The case for the United States was headed by US DOJ Acting Assistant Attorney General Brian M. Boynton, assisted by the DOJ’s Scott Bolden and by Andrew P. Zager for the Department of the Navy.