In U.S. patent news, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory recently earned a patent —U.S. Patent No. 11,401,910, entitled “Flexible Wave Energy Converter” — directed to using tiny electrical generators via dynamic strain (e.g., flexing, stretching, twisting, distension) movements to convert wave energy to electrical energy. The converters use flexible electric generators embedded throughout a flexible body.
NREL terms this kinetic renewable energy technology “distributed embedded energy converter technology” or “DEEC-Tec” (pronounced deck-tech). While the patent is specific to applications in marine renewable energy, such as clean power generated from ocean and river waves, currents, and tides, NREL predicts that the technology could be used to cull electricity from other ordinary sources of kinetic energy like clothing, cars, and buildings. See https://www.nrel.gov/news/program/2022/patented-wave-energy-technology-gets-its-sea-legs.html.
In litigation news, a Massachusetts federal judge issued a permanent injunction last month barring General Electric Co. from selling Haliade-X wind turbines that a jury found infringed a Siemens patent. The final ruling does allow, however, GE to produce turbines that have already been ordered to complete state-sponsored wind projects in Massachusetts and New Jersey, namely 62 turbines for the Vineyard Wind 1 Offshore Energy Project in Massachusetts and a number of turbines for the ongoing $475 million Ocean Wind project in New Jersey. In its amicus brief, the State of New Jersey argued that banning the GE turbines would make it impossible to complete the state-sponsored wind project, which was approved back in 2019. See https://www.reuters.com/legal/litigation/siemens-gamesa-wins-us-ban-ge-wind-turbines-patent-dispute-2022-09-07/.
U.S. federal district court is not the only venue in which GE and Siemens are battling over offshore wind technology. Siemens has challenged the validity of a GE patent for power conversion in the High Court of Justice of England and Wales. Also, in September 2020, GE sought to block Siemens' wind turbine imports at the U.S. International Trade Commission. See https://www.powermag.com/ruling-issued-in-ges-legal-dispute-with-siemens-gamesa-and-the-winner-is/.