HomeWinBuzzer NewsMicrosoft Sued by ParTec Over AI Supercomputer Patent Infringement for Azure AI

Microsoft Sued by ParTec Over AI Supercomputer Patent Infringement for Azure AI

The complaint alleges that Microsoft's Azure AI incorporates technology described in ParTec’s patents.

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In a legal move, German high-performance computing firm ParTec has filed a lawsuit against , alleging violations of their in AI supercomputer technology. The suit was submitted in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Texas and claims that Microsoft's platform improperly uses elements of ParTec's dynamic modular system architecture (dMSA).

ParTec AG is a specialist in developing and manufacturing modular High Performance Computing (HPC) systems, Quantum Computers (QC), and the associated system software. ParTec's technology is central to notable European supercomputing projects such as the JUWELS (Jülich Wizard for European Leadership Science) and JUPITER systems in Jülich and the Leonardo supercomputer in Bologna. These projects utilize ParTec's dynamic modular system architecture (dMSA) to meet advanced computational needs.
 

Microsoft's Alleged Infringement

The complaint alleges that Microsoft's Azure AI incorporates technology described in ParTec's patents. Microsoft touts its Azure AI platform for its capacity to run large models efficiently due to its unique hardware and software stack. ParTec claims the platform's use of multiple computation nodes, hardware accelerators, and a resource manager mirrors their patented technology.

Represented by Susman Godfrey L.L.P., with partner Justin Nelson leading the case, ParTec seeks an injunction to stop Microsoft's alleged use of the infringing technology, in addition to damages and fees. Susman Godfrey, founded in 1976, is recognized as a leading law firm in the US.

Patent Details and Background

ParTec, based in Munich, possesses about 150 patents, with this case centered on patents 10,142,156 (‘156), 11,934,883 (‘883), and 11,537,442 (‘442). Filed on November 27, 2018, the ‘156 patent covers a “Computer cluster arrangement for processing a computation task and method for operation thereof“. The ‘883 patent, extending the ‘156 patent, was approved on March 19, 2024, and the ‘442 patent, focused on “Application Runtime Determined Dynamical Allocation of Heterogenous Compute Resources,” was issued on December 27, 2022.

At the heart of ParTec's patents is a technique for dynamic resource management, intended to optimize how compute tasks are distributed among clusters. This system allows flexible connections between processing units and accelerators, unlike older methods where accelerators were permanently tied to specific processors. Such an approach is particularly useful for and inference, which require considerable computational resources.

ParTec is engaged in patent licensing discussions with a major American chip manufacturer and is consulting with US authorities regarding the application of its technology in a prominent exaFlop supercomputer. In Europe, the company has previously negotiated multi-million-dollar licensing agreements for its modular supercomputing innovations.

SourceParTec
Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus Kasanmascheff
Markus is the founder of WinBuzzer and has been playing with Windows and technology for more than 25 years. He is holding a Master´s degree in International Economics and previously worked as Lead Windows Expert for Softonic.com.