SanDisk Corp. is asking a federal court for a preemptive ruling that the company does not infringe a flash-memory patent held by Infineon Technology AG.
In a statement issued late Wednesday, SanDisk, Santa Clara, Calif., said it received a letter from Infineon claiming the company was in violation of Infineon's U.S. Patent No. 5,726,601.
"SanDisk believes Infineon's correspondence was motivated by Infineon's announced intention to become a flash supplier," the statement said.
An Infineon spokeswoman declined to comment.
Infineon, Munich, Germany, in February entered the flash market by forming a joint venture flash company with Israel's Saifun Semiconductor Ltd. Flash chips based on Saifun's Nitrided ROM (NROM) technology are expected to begin production in the second half of this year.
SanDisk said it has filed a complaint with the U. S. District Court in San Jose, asking for a declaratory judgement that SanDisk does not infringe the '601 patent, and further, to rule the '601 patent invalid.