Calgon Carbon's UV patent declared invalid

The U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey rules on a summary judgment motion that Calgon Carbon's broad patent for use of ultraviolet light to prevent infection from Cryptosporidium in drinking water is invalid. The patent was challenged by three companies, including ITT's WEDECO division. Calgon Carbon intends to appeal the ruling, hoping to repeat a reversal it won when a Canadian court invalidated the patent there last year...

PITTSBURGH, PA, July 3, 2006 -- Calgon Carbon Corp. announced today that the U.S. District Court for the District of New Jersey ruled on a summary judgment motion that the company's patent for the use of ultraviolet light to prevent infection from Cryptosporidium in drinking water is invalid. Calgon Carbon intends to appeal the ruling.

The New Jersey case involves three companies, including WEDECO, a division of ITT Industries Inc., that are disputing Calgon Carbon's patent, reported the Pittsburgh Business Times.

The ruling affects only Calgon Carbon's ability to collect royalties on the technology. It had planned to charge a licensing fee of 1.5-cent per 1,000 gallons of water treated. It also would have benefited greatly by an EPA mandate that all public water systems nationwide relying on surface water sources monitor for and possibly treat for Cryptosporidium, the newspaper added.

In another case in which Calgon Carbon's Canadian patent was asserted against alleged infringers, a Federal Court in Canada in 2005 declared the company's patent for the use of ultraviolet light to prevent infection from Cryptosporidium in drinking water to be invalid. Calgon Carbon appealed that decision, and the appeal was allowed, reversing the lower court's invalidity decision. That case is pending at this time.

There can be no assurance that a similar result will be obtained on the U.S. decision, the company said, but it intends to vigorously pursue the appeal. Calgon Carbon holds patents on the use of UV for disinfection of drinking water in 26 countries.

Commenting on the announcement, John Stanik, president and chief executive officer of Calgon Carbon, said, "We are, of course, disappointed with the ruling, but recognize that patent issues are complex and are often resolved in the higher courts."

Calgon Carbon Corp. (www.calgoncarbon.com), with headquarters in Pittsburgh, PA, is a global leader in services and solutions for making air and water cleaner and safer.

---

Also see: "Calgon Carbon to appeal patent ruling" (Pittsburgh Business Times)

###

More in Drinking Water