Patent decision

BL number
Concerning rights in
Hearing Officer
Dr L Cullen
Decision date
17 August 2017
Person(s) or Company(s) involved
Accipiter Radar Technologies Inc.
Provisions discussed
Section 1(1)(a); Section 1(2)(c) and (d); Section 14(5)(b)
Clarity, Excluded fields (allowed), Novelty
Related Decisions


The application relates to a radar system capable of localizing airborne targets, such as birds, in three dimensions (latitude, longitude, and altitude, 3D) providing more accurate target altitude estimate and increased overall volume coverage, as compared to conventional two dimensional (2D) radars.

The examiner considered that the application lacked novelty over the cited prior art. The hearing officer (HO) construed the latest set of claims on file and found that the application was not anticipated by the prior art. The current claims require the data to be organised and stored on-the-fly in dual form - temporally ordered and (in another distinct step) spatially ordered - in the track database and to generate real time reports from this structured data. The prior art does not spatial order data in this way.

Applying the Aerotel/Macrossan four step test, the HO then went on to consider if the claimed invention fall solely in the field of excluded matter. The HO found that the contribution lay in a 3D radar system which provides information not available from prior systems in the operational timeframes of ‘live’ applications such as bird aircraft strike hazard (BASH) management. The system integrates the radar device and the specialised track database which receives and stores radar data in real-time in the specified dual form. It is able to generate historical statistical reports on-the-fly in the context of continuous monitoring and storage of data. Although the system involves the presentation of this information to its users, the contribution is not limited to this presentation but extends to the capture and generation of this information as a whole. Similarly, although the invention relies on a computer program for its realisation, the contribution made by the invention goes beyond this. .

The application was remitted for completion of the examination process.

Full decision O/390/17 PDF document134Kb