Civil engineering and construction patents

Civil engineering patents hero image

Innovations in the field of civil engineering and construction are brought about by the need to meet or exceed existing building standards, shorten lead times, minimise cost and maintain the safety of the generally capital-intensive construction projects. In Australia, civil engineering ranks among the top 5 industries for filing patent applications in 2018.

What’s patentable?

So long as your civil engineering or construction industry technology is new and inventive, it should be patentable in any country around the world. In relation to protection of technologies involved in large projects, it is difficult to maintain confidentiality; thus, an early patent filing date is particularly important.

Benefits and challenges of filing civil engineering and construction patent applications

Civil engineering patent applications are used to protect innovative design features of structures, components and infrastructure. Companies that have patents granted to them benefit from a 20 year monopoly over these design features. Companies that have exclusive use of innovative design features may be able to:

  • More successfully respond to tenders
  • Complete works more cost efficiently
  • Complete works to a higher design standard

Examples of granted civil engineering and construction patent applications

Building construction systems
AU Patent # 2015331287
Construction machine control system, a construction machine, a construction machine management system, and a construction machine control method and program

Komatsu Ltd.

Prefabricated building systems
AU Patent # 2019100306
Prefabricated high-strength and high-efficiency thermal insulation composite external wall panel

Pan, Margarett MRS; Sunrise Smart Built-IT Co. Ltd.

Methods of construction
AU Patent # 2017203475
Composite wall panel, wall system and components thereof, and a method of construction thereof

Neil, Peter Mervyn

Safety apparatus
AU Patent # 2018101553
A fire safety arrangement for overhead pipe support arrangements and a method of installing said fire safety arrangement

DALF Enterprises Pty Ltd

Heating & cooling systems
AU Patent # 2016274787
Cooling system with direct expansion and pumped refrigerant economization cooling

Vertiv Corporation

Lifting apparatus
AU Patent # 2017101710
Lifting device of hydraulic straightening platform for shaft parts

Yuan, Xianyang MR

Concrete compositions & building materials
AU Patent # 2018204490
Concrete tile and molding material for same

Kuraray Co., Ltd.

Structural engineering
AU Patent # 2017204060
Method for producing arc-welded structural member

Nisshin Steel Co., Ltd.

Underground pipe installation
AU Patent # 2010223609
Method and system for inserting a pipe into an underground borehole

Tracto-Technik GmbH & Co. KG

Building components
AU Patent # 2018901230
A building component for use in the construction of concrete poured buildings

Nowland, Denis Alfred

Rail infrastructure & rolling stock
AU Patent # 2008301671
Steering bogie for rolling stock, rolling stock and articulated vehicle

Nippon Steel & Sumitomo Metal Corporation

Power distribution infrastructure
AU Patent # 2018100175
A power distribution system with override capability

Redarc Technologies Pty Ltd

Cleantech
AU Patent # 2018101793
Method and system for controlling operation of a renewable energy system

GTL Renewable Pty Ltd

Recycled bulk materials
AU Patent # 2006242458
Pneumatic conveying device for bulk material

Clyde Process Limited

Safety apparatus
AU Patent # 2018102112
A fall arresting overhead safety rail system

Sayfa R&D Pty Ltd

The Baxter IP approach to filing civil engineering and construction patent applications

Patent strategies that are particularly useful in the civil engineering and construction industry include:

  1. File in Australia so as to protect your home market and to make use of the 12-month period prior to having to make a foreign filing, to develop the project commercially.
  2. Use confidentiality agreements together with your patent pending to approach multinational companies or statutory bodies.
  3. Use a PCT patent application at the end of the 12-month period to continue to cover your idea in 152 countries (as at 2019) and possibly file other patents to ensure you cover all countries in which the prospective multinationals commercialise or statutory bodies will build or use the new technology.
  4. Proceed in the countries that are important to interested parties by the 30-month deadline for national phase entry.

Depending on specific circumstances, however, other strategies may be more appropriate. It is important to discuss your particular situation with a qualified attorney to determine the best strategy in each case.

Examples of civil engineering and construction patent applications filed through Baxter IP

  1. AU Patent #2018247335 – Lift shaft assembly and construction and installation thereof. Bowen and Pomeroy Pty Ltd
  2. AU Patent #2019901171 – Hole depth measuring, device and system. Jedair Compressors Pty Ltd
  3. AU Patent #2019200184 – A plumbing attachment to aid in the installation of piping. Nilsson, Fredrik
  4. AU Patent #2019200174 – A system and a method for power generation. Hiremath, Rajeev MR
  5. AU Patent #2018274977 – A system for providing a continuous stream of foamed cement product and a mixing and pump apparatus, system and an associated method for providing a stream of foamed cement material. Vacrest Pty Ltd

Speak to a patent attorney about protecting your idea today.

What are the key regions for civil engineering and construction patents?

 

  • USA – Largest market in the world that is closest to the style of the Australian market, so that improvements in building or other infrastructure construction will often translate from the Australian market to the US market.
  • China – A large economy continually undertaking substantial infrastructure projects and quite open to innovative construction technology.
  • Middle East – As we can protect 6 countries in a single Gulf Cooperation Council patent application and these countries expend large amounts on infrastructure yet have a requirement for high quality and innovative developments.
  • Europe – Over 20 countries can be protected by a single European patent application and this forms the 3rd largest economic region in the world
  • Australia – Particularly if this is your pilot market and the infrastructure is required in fields that are related to commercial projects like mining, education, health, transport and telecommunications.

Some of our civil engineering and construction clients include:

Slingshot Haulage Pty Ltd logo
Wombat Timbers Pty Ltd logo