An Introduction to PatDocs Basics

PatDocs - Search

Searching in PatDocs

  • Run simple searches to start working with documents immediately using the Basic search form, searching by keywords, inventor/company names, publication date, type of publication and legal status (i.e. dead or alive)
  • For more complex queries, the Advanced search form allows you to define and combine your criteria however you want, with easy to use drop-downs to pick the Boolean operators and search fields of interest, allowing you to be as broad or specific as required
  • Search by numbers using the Number search form, allowing you to retrieve documents by searching publication, application (US serial numbers allowed) or priority numbers
  • Search for assignees using the Company Search form. This will give you the option to run an exact assignee search or to include subsidaries.
  • It is possible to search by quantity in PatDocs. Please note, by default this option is switched off, please contact to activate:
    • Simply enter any quantity (all common measurements are covered, if a unit of measurement isn’t supported then please contact and let us know) into the Quantity box
    • It is possible to choose which part of the document to search in, whether to search for the quantity where it is in the proximity of another quantity or keyword(s) and Choose a qualifier:
      • Default: finds all quantities that overlap with your query quantity
      • Bounded: excludes matches of the form greater than/less than x
      • Exact: excludes matches to ranges
    • You can search multiple quantities at once by clicking Add Another Quantity Row, these can be combined using Boolean operators. You can also combine with non-quantity search parameters (e.g. keyword, publication date, publication type, legal status) by clicking Add non quantity search parameters
    • Please note, if your quantity is recognised the system’s interpretation is shown under the box, if not then spelling suggestions may be provided

Frequently Asked Questions

Where is the data derived from?

The database is updated daily and includes patents dating back to 1790. Please see coverage table here.

How is my result set being sorted?

By default, the results are sorted by descending Score (i.e. relevance) and show 10 results per page. These default filters can be changed by clicking the drop-down options available in the search results header.

The score is calculated from the number of times the terms searched appear in a document, weighted against the length of a document, as well as the frequency of occurrence of the term in the entire corpus. For example, a term that occurs rarely in patents in general, but occurs a lot in a particular patent would have a very high score. A term that occurs a lot in a particular patent, but also a lot in patents in general might be a good hit, but it's unlikely to be as relevant.