Western Libraries

Finding Patents

What is a Patent:

A patent refers to an exclusive right granted to anyone who invents any new, useful, and non-obvious process, machine, article of manufacture, or composition of matter, or any new and useful improvement thereof, and claims that right in a formal patent application.

Searching for Patents

  • Patent tutorials by Micheal White , Science Librarian, Queen's University Library. Excellent introduction on how to search for patents by subject , read patent numbers.

Sources for Patents

  • esp@cenet
    International patent database containing 60+ million patents from more than 70 national and regional patent offices. Online tutorials for esp@cenet searching are available here.
  • Canadian Intellectual Property Office (CIPO) Patent Database
    Canadian patent records, 1869 to present; full-text documents, 1920 to present. Guide to Patents.
  • U.S. Patent Office
    U.S. patents, 1790 to present and published applications, 2001 to present. Patents prior to 1976 can be retrieved by number, date and classification. TIFF viewer required to view/print patent documents. General overview of the U.S. patent system.
  • LexisNexis-Patents
    This database contains U.S. patents from 1971 forward, searchable by keyword, patent number, classification number, lawyer, assignee, inventor or summary.
  • SciFinder Web
    Patents from 61 patent authorities. Click for CAS coverage of patents.
  • Reaxys
    English-language patents from three IPC classes (C07 Organic Chemistry, A61K and secondary IPC C07 [Medicinal, Dental, Cosmetic Preparations], and C09B Dyes) are excerpted from the PCT (WIPO), European (EPO) and USPTO Patent Offices.
  • FreePatentsOnline
  • Google Patents : U.S. patents in PDF format, 1790 to present.

Readings on Patents: