Abstract in Patent Application

Patent application is the purpose of the Abstract is to enable the Patent Office and the public to determine quickly from a cursory inspection the nature and gist of the technical disclosure. The Abstract is directed to what is disclosed in the specification, and not necessarily the claims. In other words, the Abstract is not used for interpreting the scope of the claims.

The Abstract should start on a separate page. The Abstract generally goes at the very end of the specification, that is, immediately after the claims.

The nature of the Abstract depends on the invention. If the invention is of a basic nature, the entire technical disclosure may be new in the art, and the Abstract should be directed to the entire disclosure. Contrarily, if the patent is in the nature of an improvement in an apparatus, process, product, or composition, the Abstract should include principally the technical disclosure of the improvement. If the new technical disclosure involves modifications or alternatives, the Abstract should mention, by way of example, the preferred modification or alternative.

The patent abstract should describe the invention very clearly in the fewest possible words. In writing the Abstract, formal legal phrases and terminology often used in patent claims, such as “means” and “said,” should be avoided. The patent Abstract is to be no more than a concise statement of the technical disclosure. It should include that which is new in the art to which the invention pertains. Therefore, it is generally limited to a single paragraph with fifty to 150 words.

It is sometimes recommended to use a version of the first paragraph of the summary of the invention section as the abstract. One should make sure that the Abstract may not disclose any patentable feature of the invention not covered in the specification.

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