The opinion of the court was delivered by: Hon. Norman A. Mordue, Chief U.S. District Judge
MEMORANDUM-DECISION AND ORDER
These consolidated actions concern three patents for inventions relating to electronic filters utilized in the cable television industry. The patented technology is designed to operate in a system commonly referred to as a community antenna television network. Two patents -- U.S. Patents Nos. 5,745,838 ("838 patent") and 6,674,343 ("343 patent") -- were issued to plaintiff and counterclaim defendant Tresness Irrevocable Patent Trust and are owned by its parent company, plaintiff and counterclaim defendant Arrow Communication Laboratories, Inc. ("Arcom"). The third, U.S. Patent No. 6,737,935 ("935 patent"), is held by defendant and counterclaim plaintiff John Mezzalingua Associates, Inc., d/b/a/ PPC ("PPC"). On August 31, 2007, PPC moved (Dkt. No. 192) for construction of patent claim terms. See Markman v. Westview Instruments, Inc., 52 F.3d 967, 979 (Fed.Cir. 1995), aff'd 517 U.S. 370, 388-89 (1996). This Court referred the motion to United States Magistrate Judge David E. Peebles for a Report and Recommendation pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(B) and Local Rule 72.3(c).
On May 16, 2008, Magistrate Judge Peebles issued a learned and thorough Report and Recommendation (Dkt. No. 212). Arcom and PPC filed objections to certain aspects thereof. Pursuant to 28 U.S.C. § 636(b)(1)(C), this Court reviews de novo those parts of a Report and Recommendation to which a party specifically objects. Failure to object to any portion of a Report and Recommendation waives further judicial review of the matters therein. See Roldan v. Racette, 984 F.2d 85, 89 (2d Cir. 1993).
This Court adopts Magistrate Judge Peebles' excellent summary of the patents, the claim construction issues, and the law applicable to patent construction. The parties submitted jointly-proposed constructions of certain terms, and the Court accepts Magistrate Judge Peebles' recommendation that these constructions be adopted.*fn1 Thus, this Memorandum-Decision and Order addresses only the recommended claims constructions to which the parties have objected.
Arcom alleges PPC infringed claims 12, 15, and 39 of the 838 patent. Magistrate Judge Peebles discusses the disputed terms and sets forth recommended constructions thereof. Arcom raises no objection to any of the recommended constructions. PPC objects only to the recommended construction of the term "passive attenuator network/circuit," which is briefly discussed below. The Court adopts all other recommended constructions.
Passive Attenuator Network/Circuit
PPC objects only to Magistrate Judge Peebles' proposed construction of the term "passive attenuator network/circuit" as meaning "a network/circuit of non-powered components that together have the effect of reducing or attenuating the level or strength of signals." PPC contends that the term should be construed to include the added requirement that the network/circuit be "resistive." Thus, PPC argues, the construction should read: "a resistive network/circuit of non-powered components that together have the effect of reducing or attenuating the level or strength of signals."
Upon de novo review, the Court agrees with Magistrate Judge Peebles' reasoning and his conclusion that the patent claims do not limit the passive attenuator network/circuit to a resistive network/circuit. The Court notes that PPC's argument finds no support in the claims themselves.
Rather, application of the doctrine of claim differentiation supports the conclusion that the independent Claim 12 does not include the "resistive" element; this limitation is added in the dependent Claim 15. See generally RF Del., Inc. v. Pac. Keystone Techs., Inc., 326 F.3d 1255, 1263-64 (Fed.Cir. 2003). Nor do the specification or prosecution history support the conclusion that the claimed invention is limited to one including a resistive element. PPC's arguments based on the specification lack merit for the reasons set forth by Magistrate Judge Peebles, and transgress the fundamental rule of construction that, although "the claims must be read in view of the specification, ... limitations from the specification are not to be read into the claims." Teleflex, Inc. v. Ficosa N. Am. Corp., 299 F.3d 1313, 1326 (Fed.Cir. 2002) (citations omitted). The Report and Recommendation is accepted and adopted in this respect, and the Court holds that the term "passive attenuator network/circuit" means "a network/circuit of non-powered components that together have the effect of reducing or attenuating the level or strength of signals."
As with the 838 patent, the Court adopts those of Magistrate Judge Peebles' constructions to which no objection is interposed. PPC objects to Magistrate Judge Peebles' recommended construction of the term "insulator member." Arcom objects to ...