Patent Information and Search

  • Pradeep P. Paranjpe
Keywords: Patent information, patent search, patent database


An important purpose of working of the patent system has been to ensure that the complete details of the inventions sought to be patented pass in the public domain. Governments compensate the inventor for this public disclosure by granting patent. However, access to this information was limited to the ‘on site’availability in the patent offices and a limited number of libraries. Globalisation of economies forced internationalcooperation in the field of patents and this coincided with the advent of internet. Today more than 95 per centof the patent information published worldwide is available on internet for anyone to access it freely withoutany user fee. However, except for those who are very closely associated with the patent system, it is stillnot understood that there is much more to patent information than being a reluctant disclosure of the inventionby an applicant for patent who tries to hide more than what is disclosed. This article attempts to dispel themyths by explaining the nature of patent information and the contents of its carrier, namely, patent document. It further surveys the availability of the patent information on internet, explains the structure of the free patentdatabases including some basic features of searching patent information on internet.

How to Cite
Paranjpe, P. P. (2012). Patent Information and Search. DESIDOC Journal of Library & Information Technology, 32(3).
Special Issue on Visualising Libraries