US Patent and Trademark Office Issues 10-Millionth Patent
The 10 millionth patent has been issued in the United States, almost 228 years after President George Washington signed the first one.
The United States Patent and Trademark Office issued the newest patent Tuesday to the Raytheon Company, a defense contractor. Raytheon received the patent based on an invention by Joseph Marron, who works for the firm as an optical engineer.
Marron created a system, known as LADAR, which improves laser detection and ranging. Patent officials say it has applications in areas that include autonomous vehicles, medical imaging devices, military defense systems and space and undersea exploration. Raytheon says the concept involves delivering real time data from a laser radar.
Among the 10 million patents are inventions by Thomas Edison, Henry Ford and Apple founder Steve Jobs. For every well-known inventor, however, there are many other, less recognizable individuals whose innovative products have greatly affected our world.
On July 31, 1790, President Washington signed the first patent. The patent office said the document was issued for “a process of making potash, an ingredient used in fertilizer.”