Our CleanTech Industry Group is committed to bringing clean technology innovation to market through strategic IP counsel.
Clean technology or cleantech has been defined as a diverse range of innovative products, services, and processes that are designed to provide superior performance at lower costs, greatly reduce or eliminate negative environmental impacts and, in doing so, improve quality of life. Our attorneys serve a broad range of companies with products, services, and processes in diverse technologies including:
- Biofuels: biogas, ethanol, butanol and biodiesel
- Cellulosic biomass: degradation and ethanol production technologies
- Clean water technologies
- Carbon footprint technologies
- Energy generation and storage
- Fuel cells
- Green building materials
- Green IT
- Geothermal technologies
- Less invasive mining techniques
- Natural pesticides
- Next generation wind technologies
- Green household products
- Organism engineering
- Ocean energy technologies
- Petrochemical substitution
- Photovoltaics and solar energy
Why Sterne Kessler?
We speak your language and meet your needs with a team of attorneys and technical staff who have advanced training across a variety of disciplines. Many have worked as patent examiners at the USPTO or worked in private industry, prior to joining our firm.
Members of our CleanTech Industry Group use the full scope of Intellectual Property protection to creatively and strategically protect innovation. We know that every company has a unique set of needs, thus we tailor our approach accordingly and develop a comprehensive strategy. We use all available forms of IP protection, including utility and design patents, trade dress, trademarks, trade secrets, copyright, technology transfer and litigation.
When an IP team focuses exclusively on technology, the resulting IP protection may be technically successful, but financially marginal. We add value by teaming with your executives, in-house counsel and inventors, staying abreast of industry developments, and providing counsel on IP strategy and deal negotiation, not just patent prosecution. By learning about your business and industry sector, we are better positioned to assist you in achieving your strategic corporate goals.
Acceleration Options Available
After the expiration of the Green Technology Pilot Program, other accelerated examination options applicable to all technologies may still be used. They include the USPTO’s new Prioritized Examination program (Track I), use of the Patent Prosecution Highway, the Accelerated Examination Program, and a Petition Based on Applicant’s Age or Health. Clients are urged to check each program’s criteria carefully for qualifying conditions. For example, Track I examination allows applications to be advanced out of turn upon satisfying certain requirements, along with a $4,800 fee paid upon filing ($2,400 for small entities). Track I examination provides a goal of final disposition of an application within 12 months of filing, and is limited to 10,000 requests per fiscal year.
We can also advise on the latest options for accelerating examination of cleantech inventions such as the "Green Channel" in the United Kingdom as well as options in other countries and regions important to clean technology markets.
- Biomass/Biofuels: crop-based energy sources such as ethanol produced from corn or cellulosic biomass and biodiesel produced from vegetable oils
- Biofuels: enzyme products for biomass conversion
- Biofuels from non-food sources
- Renewable replacements for petroleum-based ingredients in coatings such as oil-derived additives for use in paints
- Fuel cells: method for manufacturing composite membrane for polymer electrolyte fuel cell
- Photovoltaics and solar energy: amorphous and nanocrystalline solar cells, including methods of production and mounting systems
- Lighting: CFL and LED lamps
- Fuel cell membrane electrode assemblies comprising nanostructures, such as nanowires
- Carbon footprint technology: use of micro- and/or nanowires of mineral oxides for carbon dioxide sequestration
- Natural gas delivery systems
- Biogas collection: an assemble on-site methane-containing biogas collection system and kit