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By J.D. Houvener
Patent Attorney and Founder

Hi everyone, I’m J.D. Houvener, the host of the Bold Today Show. For you, the inventor, entrepreneur, and business owner, get your daily dose of inspiration to help you make the world a better place. Today, we’re talking about aerospace yet again. This is the last show in a five-part series on aerospace. We’re talking about airplanes again, and the challenge today for you is looking at an airplane. Think about the last time you ran into a plane. When you looked out at the wing, what did you notice? Put that in the comments below. Did you notice any parts moving, and can you name what those parts are? We’ll give you a little hint. The front part of the wing is called the slat, and it moves to extend the leading edge of the airplane forward. The back of the wing is a series of flaps—there are inboard and outboard flaps that help give the wing additional airfoil coverage to provide more lift. There are even things called flaperons that go up and down and provide rotation for the airplane as it moves in the air.

Now, looking at patents, there’s a time to think about when you’re talking about movable and what’s called actuated material or actuatable structures that go on the wing. I’ve got here a brand new patent that’s assigned by a company out of the Netherlands, Fokker Aerospace. They have a flap that, in this space, obviously, airplanes have been around for a long time, flaps have been around for a long time. They have come up with a new type of flap that is rotatable about its Y-axis parallel to the wing. So, in effect, the flap is able to flip over mid-flight. Yes, this is a patent that’s about a flippity flap.

Now, let’s take a look at the claim set. Yesterday, we looked at amazing new technology regarding jet engine exhaust and lasers. Wild stuff, right? We’re looking at a claim set now, as you can see, which covers almost the entire page. This is over a hundred lines for just the first claim. The inventors have had to be so specific because of all the prior art technology that exists well over almost a hundred years now that airplanes have been in design mode. They’ve all needed to have what’s called control surfaces—flaps, ailerons, and, of course, rudders and elevators as well. So, that’s why this claim has to be so long. Have a look at it; it’s extremely detailed. So, that means that the rights are actually quite narrow. Remember, a large claim means a narrow scope and a narrow valuable entity. Thanks for listening to the Bold Today Show. Have a wonderful day. Go big, go bold!

About the Author
J.D. Houvener is a Registered USPTO Patent Attorney who has a strong interest in helping entrepreneurs and businesses thrive. J.D. leverages his technical background in engineering and experience in the aerospace industry to provide businesses with a unique perspective on their patent needs. He works with clients who are serious about investing in their intellectual assets and provides counsel on how to capitalize their patents in the market. If you have any questions regarding this article or patents in general, consider contacting J.D. at