The Cooperative Patent Classification (CPC) effort is a joint partnership between the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) and the European Patent Office (EPO) where the Offices have agreed to harmonize their existing classification systems (European Classification (ECLA) and United States Patent Classification (USPC) respectively) and migrate towards a common classification scheme.
The International Patent Classification (IPC) provides for a hierarchical system of language independent symbols for the classification of patents and utility models according to the different areas of technology to which they pertain. A new version of the IPC enters into force each year on January 1.
SciFinder covers patents from around the world. Patent records from nine major patent offices worldwide that meet CAS selection criteria are available within two days of the patent's publication, and fully indexed by CAS scientists within 27 days from the date of issue. After your search, you can Refine -- Document Type -- Patent to narrow your results to only patents.
This is a suggested Seven Step Strategy for conducting preliminary searches of U.S. patents and published applications using free online resources of the USPTO and its bi-lateral partner EPO (European Patent Office).
Accessible to beginners and experts, Espacenet contains data on more than 90 million patent documents from around the world. Supporting information can help you understand whether a patent has been granted and if it is still in force.