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Patents

Patent and Trademark Depository Libraries (PTRC)

Disclaimer: PTRCs are neither required nor encouraged to conduct patent and trademark searches for their patrons as that activity may be interpreted as rendering a judgment or opinion. PTRCs are required to instruct patrons in the use of the search tools available at the PTRCs for patrons conducting their own patent and trademark searches.

U.S. and international patent offices and patent databases on the internet

Specialized Patent Databases

  • DNA Patent Database (DPD). A resource for policy makers and members of the general public interested in fields like genomics, genetics and biotechnology, the DNA Patent Database (DPD) contains a collection of DNA-based patents and patent applications issued by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and makes the full-text of such patents and applications available to users at no cost.

Internet sites providing PDF versions of U.S. Patents

  • Free Patents Online. Provides access to U.S. patents from number 4,000,000 to the present.
  • Patent Retriever. Provides free PDFs of US, EPO and PCT patents and applications.
  • PatentStorm. Provides free PDFs of U.S. patents from 1976-present.
  • Pat2pdf.org. Provides free PDFs of US patents from 1838 to present.
  • SumoBrain. Full-text searching of US and EP documents, PCT applications and Japanese patent abstracts. Users can save, organize, annotate and share documents in workfiles. Patents in workfiles can be merged, moved and exported in CSV or Excel formats. SumoBrain also allows users to save searches and create search alerts.
  • WikiPatents. Database of patents open for public comment on the internet, allows PDF downloading of patents,�free patent translation�into multiple languages, and additional information�and resources.�

Exporting Patent Information to EndNote and Excel

  • Patent Tools sponsored by Greenberg Traurig. Offers a variety of export tools, both free and fee based, for exporting to Excel, HTML, and others. Other tools included allow for generating charts, tables, claim trees, and automated summaries.
  • SumoBrain. Full-text searching of US and EP documents, PCT applications and Japanese patent abstracts. Users can save, organize, annotate and share documents in workfiles. Patents in workfiles can be merged, moved and exported in CSV or Excel formats. SumoBrain also allows users to save searches and create search alerts.

U.S. Patents: Prior Art Searching Tutorial

How to Conduct a Preliminary Patent Search. Thirty-six minute patent searching tutorial.

Additional self-help patent searching tools:

Maine Statewide Databases or Free Internet Databases:  find journal articles, technical reports, standards, etc.

These databases are useful for checking for journal articles, technical reports, and news announcements about similar products and technology. If an idea has been published anywhere, it cannot be granted a patent.

Invention Organizations

Patent Guides

Attorneys Registered with the USPTO

Invention Promotion Firms

Directories of Products and Companies: Search to see if a similar product is already being sold.

Small Business Resources 

Inventor and Entrepreneur Education Opportunities in Maine

Trade Shows and Inventors Congresses See TSSN.com: The Ultimate Trade Show Resource. Searchable index of trade shows by state, city and industry.  

Internet Directories

Raymond H. Fogler Library University of Maine Orono, ME 04469 207-581-1661
Updated: by Martin Wallace

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