Antitrust Suit Over Fracking Technology Patent Tossed in Texas

April 14, 2020, 5:20 PM

Chandler Manufacturing LLC, which specializes in heating large water tanks used for fracking, failed to prove that rival Phoenix Services LLC drove one of its products out of the market by getting a bogus patent and asserting it in bad faith, a Texas federal judge ruled.

The antitrust lawsuit accused Phoenix of concealing, as part of the patent process, the prior commercial use of a proprietary water heating system by subsidiary Heat On-The-Fly LLC.

That prior use—before Phoenix acquired HOTF—should have triggered the “on-sale bar,” which makes inventions unpatentable when they’ve already been sold for a year, the suit claimed. ...

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