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Semcon IP v., Inc.


Claim Construction I

The Parties’ Positions

Plaintiff submits: “Voltage generator” and “changes … to the predetermined voltage level as a result of a specific input” limitations should not be imported into claims that simply recite causing a voltage change. Dkt. No. 48 at 20–21.

In addition to the claims themselves, Plaintiff cites the following extrinsic evidence to support its position: Carbonell Decl. ¶¶ 58–59 (Plaintiff’s Ex. E, Dkt. No. 48-6 at 23).

Defendant responds: As set forth by the Court in Huawei, the voltage output of the power supply is a function of input to the power supply. As described in the Asserted Patents, the voltage generator is external to the processor and thus requires a command or request to cause a voltage change to a predetermined value. This is distinct from random voltage fluctuations. Dkt. No. 50 at 23–25.

In addition to the claims themselves, Defendant cites the following intrinsic evidence to support its position: ’061 Patent fig.1, col.2 ll.46–60, col.6 ll.2–15, col.6 ll.30–36, col.7 ll.32–34.

Plaintiff replies: As the Court held in Huawei, the meanings of these terms are readily understandable in the context of the claims. There is nothing in the patents that mandates that “causing” a voltage change necessarily requires a “voltage generator” or a “determined” voltage. Dkt. No. 53 at 10–11.


There are two issues in dispute. First, whether causing a voltage change necessarily requires changing the voltage to a determined level as a result of a specified input. It does not. Second, whether causing a voltage change necessarily requires a voltage generator. It does not.

As set forth in the section of “voltage source,” the patents use a variety of language in regard to providing voltages. For example, the patents provide a “voltage source,” a “programmable power supply,” a “programmable voltage supply,” and “voltage generator.” See, e.g., ’247 Patent Claims 10 and 16; ’061 Patent col.2 l.53, Claim 10. In light of this, the Court will not read a “voltage generator” limitation into the terms at issue here.

Also as set forth above, the Court’s Huawei construction regarding the output voltage level being “specified by an input” relate to programmable and selectable voltage sources and power supplies, not to every source of voltage. The Court rejects Defendant’s proposal to inject this limitation into each of the Causing-a-Change-in-Voltage Terms.

As to whether “causing” a voltage change according to the claims includes within its scope random voltage changes, whatever their cause, the Court holds it does not. In the context of the Asserted Patents, the plain meaning of causing a voltage change requires a controlled and purposeful, rather than accidental, change. See, e.g., ’061 Patent col.6 ll.9–13, col.7 ll.32–35. Indeed, at oral argument Plaintiff indicated that a random voltage change is not “caused” as claimed.

Accordingly, the Court rejects Defendant’s request to read in the limitations of “voltage generator changes the voltage furnished by the voltage generator to the determined voltage level as a result of a specified input.” The Court holds that the Causing-a-Change-in-Voltage Terms have their plain and ordinary meaning without the need for further construction.

Case No. 2:18-cv-00192

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