Friday, 4 March 2011

EQE C 2011: reading the claims

At DeltaPatents, we always advise our candidates to start the C paper with reading the claims carefully. Of course that's also the first thing I did after printing the paper.

My first observations:
  • 8 claims = a lot of attacks
  • Many strange words, that are probably explained in the description and/or other annexes. Fin, corrugated, flux, brazing, manganese.
  • Claim 1: What kind of protrusions? What function? What length is desired? Such features are often attackable using prior art features that are quite different from the preferred embodiments that you find in the description and figures of A1.
  • Claim 2: Nothing special.
  • Claim 3: Product by process. The attack on claim 1 will work again (if there are no priority problems). Probably, an additional attack will be expected. I am expecting to find a different manufacturing process in the prior art (known or obvious) leading to the same product (no technical difference).
  • Claim 4: Product by process again. The process step clearly has a technical effect. The claimed product comprises a joint, brazing alloy and flux (but I still have no idea how and why).
    Entirely different claim category. Probably a different closest prior art document.
  • Claim 5: Sort of product by process ('pre-coated')
  • Claim 6: Strange claim. Not a range is claimed, but two single points. I just hope not to find a prior art embodiment having 3 g/m2 of zinc.
    Why do they use the word 'provides' and not 'comprises'?
  • Claim 7: Why would the heat exchanger of claim 4 not be suitable for use with these fluids? I expect an easy attack.
  • Claim 8: Different claim category again. I expect some prior art that has nothing to do with heat exchangers.
    When does a tube have a planar surface? And for what reason?

Ok. That's a lot of questions and remarks for now. I will now start reading the client's letter and the description of A1. I am not going to give away my full analysis of the paper in this blog, but in the coming weeks some interesting topics will certainly be discussed here.

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