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Svalbard (of Svalbard and Jan Mayen fame) is an arctic archipelago portion of the Kingdom of Norway and home to around 2,500 miners, tourism workers, and researchers. Svalbard is also the home of the Svalbard Global Seed Vault, an ambitious project to store a massive amount of seeds as a genetic backup plan precluding plant mass extinctions.
Below you’ll find a taste of Norway and Svalbard in the patent world.
Norwegian full text patent coverage is not currently available, with a few search systems offering partial text or bibliographic coverage (as you can see by using our Interactive Patent Coverage Map). Norway’s official Patent Office website provides basic information on patent protection in Norway as well as highlighting that Norway is a member state of the Patent Cooperation Treaty (PCT) and party to the European Patent Convention (EPC). According to the 2009 year end report: “The Norwegian Industrial Property Office (NIPO) received 3,604 patent applications in 2009.”
A few US patent documents have specifically mentioned research that took place on Svalbard, so let’s touch on those here:
- Device for seismic exploration – US 7,226,773 – Rygg et al. – This seismic recording and exploration device was designed for use on snow and ice…so Svalbard was a great place for the inventors to test it.
- Rapidly deployable, three-dimensional seismic recording system – US 2005/0249039– Miller et al. – Another seismic recording system tested in Svalbard. This application was later abandoned.
- Endoglucanases – US 7,226,773 – Schulein et al. – “Ascobolus stictoideus Speg. Isolated from goose dung, Svalbard, Norway.” What else is there to say?
- Region-Suited Geography Playing Card Deck With Main Information and Place-Filler Suit Cards; A Companion Deck; and Games – US 5,927,719 – Young – Okay so no research conducted in Svalbard went into this one, but it’s a pretty neat educational card game that contains a Svalbard card (as well as a Franz Josef Land card!)
Thanks for joining me on a little patent odyssey to the icebergs of Svalbard…and no taking the seeds!
(…and yes, the title is a reference to The Bard’s Tale)
This post was contributed by Intellogist Team member Chris Jagalla.