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USPTO Announces Semiconductor Technology Pilot Program in Support of CHIPS for America Program

03-Dec-2023 | Source : The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) | Visits : 1013

WASHINGTON - To encourage research, development, and innovation in semiconductor manufacturing, the Commerce Department’s US Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) is announcing a new Semiconductor Technology Pilot Program developed to support the CHIPS for America program, a press release stated by the USPTO. 

“The CHIPS and Science Act is a once-in-a generation opportunity to foster a new wave of American innovation, protect our national security, and preserve our global economic competitiveness,” said Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo. “This new USPTO program will ensure we are prioritizing critical intellectual property protections to incentivize investments in domestic semiconductor manufacturing.” 

The pilot program is designed to accelerate improvements in the semiconductor industry by expediting the examination of patent applications for certain semiconductor manufacturing innovations. Qualifying nonprovisional utility patent applications, directed to certain processes and apparatuses for manufacturing semiconductor devices, will be advanced out of turn for examination (accorded special status) until a first action. Applicants are not required to satisfy the current requirements of the accelerated examination program or the prioritized examination program to qualify. 

“Fast-tracking examination of patent applications related to semiconductor device manufacturing speeds bringing key innovations to market and strengthens our nation's supply chain,” said Kathi Vidal, Under Secretary of Commerce for Intellectual Property and Director of the USPTO. “From innovations in phones to cars to other everyday devices, our goal with this program is to get more cutting-edge technologies into the hands of consumers faster while reducing our dependence on the foreign supply of semiconductor chips.” 

The USPTO will begin accepting petitions to participate in the Semiconductor Technology Pilot Program on Friday, December 1, 2023. The pilot program will be available until December 2, 2024, or until the USPTO accepts 1,000 grantable petitions, whichever is reached first.


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