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Re: [TowerTalk] Force 12 - Patents

Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Force 12 - Patents
From: Jim Lux <>
Date: Mon, 24 Sep 2007 09:25:21 -0700
List-post: <>
Roger Parsons wrote:
> This subject seems to have moved far away from Force
> 12! 
> Not sure of the date of the Mertel patent

jan 2004

, but Racal
> Antennas developed and sold a military tunable antenna
> using all of the claims in around 1970, _except_ that
> it was a monopole rather than the dipole construction
> described. Of course the interface with the radio was
> not terribly sophisticated - basically an swr detector
> and predetermined lengths for each frequency.
> I have no idea whether the Racal antenna was patented
> or even original, but in the UK at least, published
> prior art invalidates later attempts to patent the
> same concept.

I suspect that's why the Mertel patent covers using two or more 
adjustable elements and includes the radio in the system.  The Racal 
antenna is cited as a reference (or as a reference in one of the 
references..I don't recall which)

The best (in terms of robustness) are those which take something that 
"everybody knows" and applies it in a new way, or puts a novel twist on 
it.  The trick is that once you've read the patent, you think "oh, of 
course, that's obvious", but it wasn't, if you go back and look and see 
what others have done.

At some level, you say, well, Maxwell's equations describe everything 
possible, so don't they constitute prior art for all antennas?  But, 
obviously, that's not the case.

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