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July, 31st, 2019

WHIPgroup was successful in having patentable subject matter rejections overturned by the Patent Trial and Appeal Board (PTAB). The invention relates to a method of detecting a fault in a robot joint using torque measurements. The Examiner conceded that the invention was novel and non-obvious over the prior art, but maintained that it was patent ineligible. WHIPgroup argued that the USPTO had improperly applied the law and over-simplified the inventive concept. An oral argument was held on July 3 and attended remotely by WHIPgroup from its video argument room. After the oral argument, the PTAB issued its order agreeing with WHIPgroup and reversing the rejections. The PTAB found the claims patent eligible because they integrate the inventive concept into a practical application, and specifically referred to the invention disclosure discussing improvements over prior art methods.

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