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PPC Broadband, Inc. v. Corning Optical Communs. RF, LLC

United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit

February 22, 2016, Decided

2015-1361, 2015-1366, 2015-1368, 2015-1369

Opinion

 [***1063]  [*737]   Moore, Circuit Judge.

PPC Broadband, Inc. appeals from the Patent Trial and Appeal Board's ("Board") final written decisions in inter partes reviews ("IPRs") concluding that claims 1-32 of U.S. Patent No. 8,287,320, claims 1-9 of U.S. Patent No. 8,323,060, and claims 7-27 of U.S. Patent No. 8,313,353 would have been obvious. We vacate the Board's determination that claims 8, 16, and 31 of the '320 patent, claims 1-9 of the '060 patent, and claims 7-27 of the '353 patent are unpatentable, affirm the Board's determination that claims 1-7, 9-15, 17-30, and 32 of the '320 patent are unpatentable, and remand for further proceedings.

Background

A coaxial cable has an inner electrical conductor (often called the "signal" [**2]  or "signal feed") and an outer electrical conductor (often called the "ground return" or "ground"). Poor or intermittent connections on either conductor can result in noise or non-functionality. The '320 patent family discloses coaxial cable connectors having a connector  [***1064]  body 50, a post 40, a nut 30 (also called a "coupler"), and a "continuity member" that contacts the post and the nut so that electrical grounding continuity is extended through the post and the nut. '320 patent col. 2 ll. 3-6, 15-19, 37-41.1 The '320 patent discloses more than twenty embodiments of continuity members. For example, Figure 13 depicts an embodiment where the continuity member 370 extends underneath the body 50. Figure 17 depicts a continuity member 570 that is sandwiched between the post 40 and the body 50.

 [*738]  

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815 F.3d 734 *; 2016 U.S. App. LEXIS 3022 **; 118 U.S.P.Q.2D (BNA) 1062 ***

PPC BROADBAND, INC., Appellant v. CORNING OPTICAL COMMUNICATIONS RF, LLC, Appellee

Prior History:  [**1] Appeals from the United States Patent and Trademark Office, Patent Trial and Appeal Board in Nos. IPR2013-00340, IPR2013-00345, IPR2013-00346, IPR2013-00347.

Disposition: AFFIRMED-IN-PART, VACATED-IN-PART, AND REMANDED.

CORE TERMS

continuity, patent, electrical, nut, connector, surfaces, coupler, configured, argues, specification, proceedings, port, invention, broadest, extends, shaped, terms, embodiment, interface, teaches, reasonable interpretation, unpatentable, tightened, coaxial cable, limitations, grounding, patentee, lip, perpendicular, decisions

Business & Corporate Compliance, US Patent & Trademark Office Proceedings, Patent Law, US Patent & Trademark Office Proceedings, Patent Law, Jurisdiction & Review, Standards of Review, De Novo Review, Substantial Evidence, Reexamination Proceedings, Examinations, Claims & Specifications, Claims, Claim Language, Elements & Tests, Graham Test, Secondary Considerations