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Local Tech Wire

DURHAM, N.C. – (Nasdaq: CREE) is beefing up its patent portfolio for silicon chips.

The global maker of chips and light emitting diodes (LEDs) said Thursday that it had acquired a portfolio of patents and related applications from Daimler AG. Cree had already licensed use of the technology.

Financial terms were not disclosed.

“We secured the IP through a mutual agreement,” a Cree spokesperson told LTW and WRAL.com.

The technology involved is used to make silicon carbide chips for higher-end radio frequency applications and involves a process called vanadium doping.

“Silicon Carbide is typically an electrically conductive material when it is grown,” Cree’s Michelle Murray explained. “Adding vanadium changes the allows one to easily convert the SiC from a conductor to an insulator. Semi-insulating SiC is preferred for high-power RF transistor applications such as cellular communications or military radio broadcast.

“Adding (doping) Vanadium to SiC is an effective method to produce semi-insulating SiC for high-power RF/microwave transistors,” she added.

The patents and applications are titled “Process for Producing High-Resistance Silicon Carbide”

“We had licensed this impressive group of patents for many years and the full acquisition is a valuable addition to our already extensive intellectual property position,” said Cengiz Balkas, Cree vice president and general manager, power and RF, in a statement.