Carnegie Mellon University
April 08, 2015

Court Hears Appeal of Disk-Drive Patent Infringement Case

By Ken Walters / 412-268-1151 / 

A Federal appeals court in Washington, D.C., heard arguments this week in a landmark patent infringement case that had been brought by Carnegie Mellon University in 2009.

In 2012, a jury in Federal district court in Pittsburgh found that Marvell Technology Group Ltd. and Marvell Semiconductor Inc. had willfully infringed on two patents granted to the university as well as Jose Moura, a professor in CMU’s Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, and Aleksandar Kavcic, a former Ph.D. student of Moura who is now a professor of electrical and computer engineering at the University of Hawaii.

The patents protect innovative technology for more accurately reading data on high-speed magnetic disks. CMU seeks to protect the rights of its faculty and students and the groundbreaking discoveries that are the hallmark of the university.

The jury awarded CMU $1.2 billion, and after the Federal judge upheld the jury’s finding of willful infringement, she increased the award to $1.5 billion.

Marvell appealed the decision. The United States Court of Appeals for the Federal Circuit, which heard this week’s appeal, is expected to issue its ruling later this year.

Updates and information about the case, including a timeline, FAQ and many of the court filings and rulings, can be found at