Department of CommerceのPatent and Trademark Office(USPTO)が提案している制度。
Commerce Takes Stab at Speeding Up Green Tech Patent Processing
Dec 9, 2009
The Commerce Department’s Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is launching a pilot program to speed up processing for certain green technology patent applications. The goal is to accelerate development and deployment of new technologies, create green jobs and promote American competitiveness in the sector.
Patents for green technologies, such as Smart Grid innovations, typically take about 40 months for a final decision. The new program is expected to reduce the decision process by an average of one year — shortening the waiting time from a little over three years to a little over two years.
“American competitiveness depends on innovation and innovation depends on creative Americans developing new technology. By ensuring that many new products will receive patent protection more quickly, we can encourage our brightest innovators to invest needed resources in developing new technologies and help bring those technologies to market more quickly,” Commerce Secretary Gary Locke said.
Patent applications are usually taken for examination in the order they were filed. But under the pilot program, the first 3,000 green technologies-related applications that have proper petitions filed will be chosen for accelerated evaluation.
USPTO’s David Kappos stressed the urgent need to bring new technologies into the marketplace faster. “Every day an important green tech innovation is hindered from coming to market is another day we harm our planet and another day lost in creating green businesses and green jobs. Applications in this pilot program will see a significant change in pendency, which will help bring green innovations to market more quickly,” he said.
Major Smart Grid player GE gave the USPTO pilot program its enthusiastic stamp of approval. “We hail this initiative as an excellent incentive to fuel further innovation of clean technology and a terrific mechanism to speed the dissemination of these patented technologies throughout the world,” said Cal Horton, chief intellectual property counsel for GE.
If the pilot is successful, the USPTO will look at ways to expand and continue the accelerated patenting process for green technologies.
Quick Take: This USPTO initiative has the potential to significantly cut processing time, which is one of the logjams that gets in the way of timely and efficient deployment of new Smart Grid technologies.
Commerce Department news release
USPTO pilot program additional details
Smart Grid Policy and Regulation channel on SGN