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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. Are you the inventor, entrepreneur, and business owner? Get your daily dose of inspiration to make the world a better place. All right, we’re in the middle of the week, and we’re talking about space this week, outer space, and the different technologies that are included in that to help us get to planets, to the moon, and to the resources that spark all that imagination.

What I want to do is challenge you today and think about your industry, okay? Your product that you’re working on, your innovation, that next project you’re dealing with, how is it related to space? You might not think about how, if at all, it is related. I want you to think hard, think about how you use communications in your business, rely on satellites, rely on information about the weather. These are different ways that space, and through satellites and different orbiting methods, can actually impact the way you do business.

So take 10 minutes today and think about what major impacts you might see coming down the pipeline through space innovations that are going to help or hurt your technology. We’re still talking about this new database that we found. It’s called the NASA public domain website, and the URL is listed right here: I encourage you to take a look at this if anybody’s innovating in the technology space that NASA has provided. It’s a great foundation to start; they’re giving away their technology that otherwise could have been protected. They’re doing good for the world. It’s a very interesting concept. I love it. I think it’s something innovators would be hurting to miss out on.

We’re still looking at this one patent that I found a couple of days ago, and this is about a rocket system, a rocket engine combustion system. The focus today is going to be looking at the drawings, 37 CFR 1.84. This is the requirement to have drawings in a patent system, but what’s not required is to do what this did. In the patent, we found for this rocket system (Patent 7,904,436), which was issued in 2011, surprisingly features a prior art drawing. So, figure one, and we’re going to show it up on the screen here, figure one, in parentheses, “prior art.” What prior art means is it’s not something that this inventor is claiming. They’re saying, “Look, this technology already exists,” and they’re drawing out their full figure demonstrating what the current state of the art is in this rocket system technology. They’re showing what they’re building on, kind of giving a bit of credit to the shoulders that they’re standing on.

Well, this is certainly not common. It can be done. I just wanted to show you this and help people understand if they were looking through this patent document that this figure one is by no means anything that this inventor or this patent has a claim to. They’re distinctly saying what they are not claiming and what’s already out there. It’s a unique thing to do; I think it’s rather rare. A more common avenue is to go just to write out the figures and the claims that you are claiming invention to. You don’t really want to let the examiner in on the prior art because they may have their own interpretation with the prior art is. The more information you give them about prior art and structure that way, the potential is for them to actually expand what really is in the prior art and have it bleed into what you’re trying to claim.

So bottom line, patent drawings are fairly specific, and it comes down to even the phrasing to use as you describe those drawings. If you’re inventing out there, if you know anybody else that’s inventing and could use some extra tips or has some questions you need to answer, give us a call. Our firm is always offering a 30-minute free consultation. We believe strongly in educating the community out there like you that are making a big difference in the world. So I hope you all had a wonderful time listening to this session, and please share on social media, give us feedback, thumbs up and like it if you do. Otherwise, just share your comments. We’re always looking for improvement. I’m your host J.D. Houvener of the Bold Today Show. Have a wonderful day.

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