June 22, 2003
June 22, 2003
June 25, 2003
8.1254.1 - 8.1254.12
Using Patents to Identify Emerging Trends in Biomedical Engineering
Charlotte A. Erdmann Siegesmund Engineering Library, Purdue University
Patents are a rich source of information for educating students on emerging fields in biomedical engineering. Since 80% of the information in patents is not published elsewhere, faculty should seriously consider including patent instruction in their courses. Patents may be the first and only place that innovations are detailed. Protecting patent rights may preclude presenting and publishing cutting edge information in journal articles and conference papers. This paper covers U.S. issued patents and published applications as well as world patents and applications. Free databases available on the World Wide Web will be emphasized. Classification systems that are discussed include United States, International, and European. Known inventors and assignees are also discussed. Search examples are shown.
Students regularly review journal articles and conference papers in undergraduate education programs for state-of-the-art information. Patents are required to include information that is “new, novel, and non-obvious.” This cutting edge information is usually not published in journal articles and conference papers. Since 80% of the information in patents1 is not published elsewhere, faculty should seriously consider including patent instruction in their courses. Literature reviews of many topics may be incomplete without using patents. U.S. and world patents are relevant.
The definition for a patent is based on a country’s laws or regulations. The definition provided by the United States Patent and Trademark Office states:
A patent is a property right granted by the Government of the United States of America to an inventor “to exclude others from making, using, offering for sale, or selling the invention throughout the United States or importing the invention into the United States” for a limited time in exchange for public disclosure of the invention when the patent is granted.2
An application is filed in the name of the actual inventor. An inventor’s employment contract usually requires that the rights be assigned to the employer. The employer is called the assignee. Many patents are also filed by independent inventors. An inventor is strongly encouraged to seek legal counsel and have a registered patent attorney or agent file the application.
“Proceedings of the 2003 American Society for Engineering Education Annual Conference & Exposition Copyright © 2003, American Society for Engineering Education”
Erdmann, C. (2003, June), Using Patents To Identify Emerging Fields In Biomedical Engineering Paper presented at 2003 Annual Conference, Nashville, Tennessee. https://peer.asee.org/12202
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