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It’s Official! Our First Patent Has Been Awarded
Can you afford to lose visibility of this cargo’s location? For an hour? For a day? For a week? Of course, we all know the answer already: losing visibility into critical assets can mean losing even more: money, time, productivity, safety, sanity…
We just learned that – nearly five years after first filing a provisional patent – the United States Patent and Trademark Office has issued a patent to Geoforce for our solution geared towards ensuring safety while moving and handling containers with radioactive materials inside. Geoforce made the announcement earlier today in a press release.
Officially, the patent is named: “Method, apparatus, and systems for remotely monitoring the location and usage history of radioactive materials stored with a shielded container or overpack.”The uniqueness of this invention is that we not only are tracking the location of containers, but we can actually tell whether or not the radioactive material is still inside, or if the container is moving. The solution also includes alerting mechanisms when problems might exist. This will make a big difference for our current oil and gas customers and for future customers in new industries. For those of you who like getting all the details, it is USPTO Patent # 12/288,909. Here is a link to the actual patent. We learned a lot during the past five years – as we went through the process of filing a provisional patent in 2007, filing the actual patent a year later, and then sweating through numerous excruciating details until the patent was officially awarded.
We are proud of this milestone for a number of reasons:
- First and foremost, this is a patent that truly is for the greater good. The radioactive materials transported and used in the oilfield are necessary, but also can be very dangerous. The consequences of problems are potentially significant – and we’ve created a solution that addresses this concern.
- This solution is something that’s been worked on by a number of other organizations, in both industry and government. For the USPTO to recognize Geoforce above others makes a great statement about the invention and the ideas that are being created here at Geoforce.
- This patent realizes a vision that our Founder, Jimmie MacLean, had many years ago when he was an Oil & Gas Radiation and Safety Officer. From time to time, all of us have thought: “There’s got to be a safer (or better), (or faster) way to do X”. Most of us dream about inventing something. That happened with Jimmie, and it’s really rewarding to see that idea become a recognized invention.
In addition to the two individuals named on the patent (Jimmie MacLean and Brandon Taylor, our Chief Hardware Architect), a number of people at Geoforce had a hand in earning the patent. As five years shows, it’s not an easy process – and the standard is pretty high – so we should all be proud of the achievement.