EXTON, PA. - Compounder LNP Engineering Plastics Inc. of Exton is suing three competitors for allegedly infringing upon three LNP patents for manufacturing and selling long-fiber-reinforced thermoplastic composites. DSM Engineering Plastics Inc. of Evansville, Ind.; Polymer Composites Inc. of Winona, Minn.; and RTP Co., also of Winona, were named as defendants in three separate patent infringement lawsuits LNP filed this week in federal court in Wilmington, Del., said George Niznik, LNP vice president and head of research and development. Also named were RTP parent Miller Waste Mills Inc. of Winona and PCI parent Hoechst Celanese Corp. of Summit, N.J., Niznik said.
DSM and PCI officials were unavailable for comment.
LNP's patented LFRT compounds are sold under its Verton trademark, but the company claims exclusive rights to make, use and sell them in the United States and Europe. DSM and PCI sell their LFRT products under the trade names Fiberstran and Celstran, respectively.
The three Verton patents - two cover LFRT pellets and molded parts; the third, LFRT structures from which pellets are made - originally belonged to London-based ICI plc, which sold LNP to Kawasaki Steel Corp. of Tokyo in 1991.
The materials are used to replace metal in structural applications that include auto parts, business machine housings and sports equipment.