Google is accused of being a balloon thief

Space Data Corporation has demanded a jury trial for patent rights infringement by Google and Alphabet in their Project Loon.

Space Data Corporation has demanded a jury trial for patent rights infringement by Google and Alphabet accusing the companies of stealing their balloon based communication technologies. The technologies in question are Space Data Corporation's SkySat and SkySite systems which use weather balloons to carry radio transceivers 60,000 and 100,000 feet in the air. Apparently, a cluster of just 70 of these high altitude balloons can provide complete wireless coverage to the continental united states for voice as well as data services.

In the case filing, Space Data Corporation alleges that Google representatives stole confidential information and trade secrets to use in its Project Loon. 10 Google representatives, including co-founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin had met with Space Data Corporation executives in 2007 and 2008. These meetings were covered with a non disclosure agreement. Space Data alleges that this NDA was violated and Google used the information it had on the implementation of Space Data Corporation technology to proceed with development of Project Loon. Negotiations of a partnership between Google and Space Data Corporation apparently failed at that time, reports The Stack.

Google is accused of being a balloon thief

The case filed by Space Data Corporation shows a comparison between a patent granted to Space Data Corporation, and a schematic for Project Loon on Google's web site. The filing also carries photos of Google co-founders launching Space Data Corporations balloons during their visit to the Space Data Corporation facility. Google was apparently given access to Space Data Corporation's production line and network operation center. The original PDF document of the original filing can be accessed here.

 

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