LONDON Dr. Andreas Paul Schueppen, a former employee of Atmel Germany GmbH, is preparing for his first day in court in a case filed against his former employer in which he is claiming he is owed 42 million euro (about $60 million) as an "inventor's bonus."
Schueppen joined the Daimler-Benz research centre in Ulm, Germany, in 1993, where he worked on SiGe technology and improved in 1994 the then world record for silicon-based transistors to 160-GHz maximum frequency of oscillation. During 1995 and 1996 he transferred the SiGe technology from Daimler in Ulm to production at TEMIC Telefunken Microelectonics in Heilbronn, Germany.
Silicon-germanium was also being researched by many leading semiconductor companies and the technology is now used in mobile applications such as mobile phones, wireless LAN, GPS receiver, park distance control and anti-collision radar.
Schueppen filed his case Oct. 25, 2008, and claims that it is only with his patents and the IP that TEMIC was able produce the technology in its facility in Heilbronn, Germany. In 1998 Daimler sold a part of TEMIC to Atmel Corp. Schueppen said he received a lump-sum for his inventions of 9,000 Deutschmarks (about 4,500 euros or $6,500) in 2001 and is alleging malicious fraud at that time.
The first hearing in the case is due to take place on Friday Aug 28 at a court in Mannheim, Germany. Atmel declined to comment.
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