SILICON VALLEY – Intellectual Property Litigation partner David Jakopin led a Pillsbury team in defeating two Inter Partes Review (IPR) petitions (IPR2020-00494 and IPR2020-00495) filed on behalf of IBM Corporation against the firm’s client and patent holder, Rigetti Computing. The IPRs were denied institution before a panel of administrative patent judges of the U.S. Patent & Trademark Office’s Patent Trial & Appeal Board (PTAB) on August 11.

The denial of the IPR petitions means that all claims of U.S. Patent No. 9,836,699, entitled “Microwave Integrated Quantum Circuits With Interposer,” remain valid and enforceable. The ‘699 patent is directed to a quantum computing apparatus including a quantum circuit device and an interposer having a connectorization layer for connecting the apparatus to a plurality of cables.

The PTAB agreed with the patent owner’s position that the ground for rejection of the claims is deficient because relying upon the structure that petitioner relies on (the Schoelkopf quantum computing device) for the connectorization layer is contrary to what is actually disclosed and taught and the proposed modification would have rendered the Schoelkopf device inoperable for its intended purpose.

Based in Berkeley and founded in 2013, Rigetti Computing builds and delivers integrated quantum systems over the cloud and develops software solutions optimized for hybrid quantum-classical computing. The company owns and operates Fab-1, the world’s first dedicated quantum chip foundry.

Jakopin stated: “[T]he ‘699 patent is directed to cutting-edge quantum computing technology. The PTAB’s denial of institution of these IPRs illustrates the strength of the Rigetti portfolio and the Rigetti technology behind it.”

In addition to Jakopin, the Pillsbury team included Intellectual Property partners Josh Tucker in Austin and Patrick Doody in Northern Virginia, patent agent Seth Newman in New York and attorney Siamak Hefazi in San Diego.