Neste Oil files patent infringement action against Dynamic Fuels
On May 30, Neste Oil Corp. announced it has filed a patent infringement action against Dynamic Fuels LLC, Syntroleum Corp. and Tyson Foods Inc. in the U.S. District Court for the District of Delaware. According to Neste Oil, it believes one of its patents has been infringed by the companies with regard to renewable diesel production at Dynamic Fuels’ Geismar, La.-based plant.
The patent Neste Oil refers to in its announcement protects certain aspects of its renewable diesel production technology. The company noted the patent was issued by the U.S. Patent Office May 29, one day prior to the infringement action filing announcement. According to Neste Oil, the patent expires in 2025.
“Neste Oil is the world's leading producer of premium-quality renewable diesel,” said Matti Hautakangas, Neste Oil’s general counsel in a statement. “Based on our proprietary technology, Neste Oil's NExBTL renewable diesel is the world’s best and cleanest diesel fuel today. We have protected this technology, which is very important for the group’s business, with a number of patents and are committed to vigorously defending our intellectual property in this and other areas worldwide.”
An announcement issued by Syntroleum in response to the action noted that the infringement was filed in regard to U.S. Patent No. 8,187,344, which relates to and shares the same investors as another Neste Oil patent, U.S. Patent No. 7,279,018. Syntroleum noted that both relate to fuel composition.
Syntroleum stated that a prior complaint filed regarding the ‘018 patent was rejected. “On March 22, 2012, the USPTO’s Board of Patent Appeals and Interferences affirmed the Examiner’s rejection of the ‘018 patent’s claims, finding the ‘the evidence of record as a whole supports the examiner’s conclusion that the fuel composition as claimed would have been obvious to one of ordinary skill in the art…’” said Syntroleum in a statement.
Similarly, Syntroleum asserts that the ‘344 patent adds nothing new to the field of fuel compositions for diesel engines, and states it has not infringed on any of Neste Oil’s alleged patent rights. Syntroleum said it intends to vigorously defend the allegations and is confident its position will be vindicated.