UMC Electronics Co. v. U.S., 816 F.2d 647 (1987) Notes

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contract w navy to supply accelerometer to determine if plane needs to be serviced

trying to improve technology

  • late 66- UMC-A contract -
  • early 67 - UMC-A doesnt work, start work on UMC-B
  • 4 or 5 /67- prototype built for UMC-B, of a subcomponent
  • 6/27/67- 1st proposal?
  • 8/2/67- submitted more detailed proposal for UMC-B
  • 8/9/67 - UMC gives demo of B
  • early 68 - navy says screw it
  • 7/68 - new request from navy, leads to contract with other guys
  • 8/68-filed
  • 6/80 - UMC files action against US

Claims Ct says valid patent, not infringed by ACA that the govt used

  • UMC mad they said not infringed
  • US mad patent not held invalid

Now CAFC says patent invalid, not concerned with infringement ruling

Why did Claims Ct say valid?

  • bc it wasn't "on sale"

end of the story: don't need physical embodiment for on sale bar to apply

  • yea it was just a prototype being tested before but it had all the parts


  • wants physical model to show its working in order to be considered testing/on sale
    • probably more often carries actual dates with it
  • mad that other guys went against precedent

inventions done when youve got it all figured out, not when you make a final working model.