Patent research is one of more obscure things one can do. It is hard enough to determine whether there is a US patent for a given invention, and today’s globalized world often requires looking at international patents as well. Where to begin? One place to start is this week’s Guide of the Week from the ALA GODORT Handout Exchange Wiki:
Patent and Trademark Information (Univ. of California–Berkeley, 1999) Last updated 2/9/2007
This guide is divided into the following sections:
- Pre-1872 Patent Information
- Foreign and International Patent Information
- Other Patent Collections
- Bibliography of Patent & Trademark Sources
- CD-ROM Sources
- Internet Sources
- Step by Step Patent Research
They use a mix of print and electronic resources with varying date coverage. A small set of the resources they highlight include:
- Japan Patent Office: A searchable database of Japanese patent abstracts, which includes the patent number, title, inventor, company, and abstract of the patent.
- Foreign patents: a guide to official patent literature by Francis J. Kase. 1972.
- Code of Federal Regulations, Title 37: Patents, Trademarks and Copyrights.
- Finding List for United States Patent, Design, Trademark, Reissue, Label, Print, and Plant Patent Numbers. – Gives the volume number of the Official Gazette in which a given patent number will be found for the years 1872-1993. Includes information on earlier patents.
- Google Patent Search – Access over 7 million patents from 1790-2006. Does not currently include patent applications, international patents, or U.S. patents issued over the last few months. Includes tips for advanced patent searching.
Finally, since the librarians at Berkeley realize that no one has all the answers, they end with links to several other helpful patent searching guides:
- Searching for pre-1976 U.S. patents via University of Maine
- Patent Search Tutorial and Information via University of Texas
- The 7-Step Strategy via the U.S. Patent Office
- U.S. Patent Searching via Oregon State University
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.