Patent decision

BL number
Concerning rights in
GB 1201052.6
Hearing Officer
Miss J Pullen
Decision date
19 August 2014
Person(s) or Company(s) involved
Sustainable Energy and Heating Systems Ltd
Provisions discussed
Patents Act sections 1(2)(c)
Excluded fields (allowed)
Related Decisions


The application relates to a metering system to measure usage of renewable energy produced by a privately owned micro-generating unit. The micro-generating unit is part of a larger commercial installation which operates on the basis of ‘sharecropping’, where private users are allocated amounts of renewable energy based upon their investment into the scheme. The amount of renewable energy allocated to a user and other contractual terms and conditions are stored in a remote database which is accessed by a meter when appropriate security authorisation, i.e. chip-and-pin, is used. The meter is able to identify the amount of renewable energy allocated to the user and interrupt the metering of energy supplied from a standard network supplier until the allocation of renewable energy is used up. The functionality of the meter also includes the ability to account for surpluses being fed back into an energy network and also measurement of any energy use which is over and above that produced by the micro-generating unit.

The hearing officer found that the current independent claim was excluded under section 1(2)(c) as a method of doing business, but found subject matter in the dependent claims relating to the functionality of the meter which would not fall within the excluded categories. Subject to the applicant submitting amended claims which clearly include the functionality of the meter, the application is remitted back to the examiner for further substantive examination.

Full decision O/371/14 PDF document51Kb