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M.I.T. Technology Disclosure

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I. The Technology Licensing Office (TLO) reviews all Technology Disclosure forms as they are received from members of the M.I.T. community. Where appropriate, the TLO endeavors to license M.I.T. inventions to industry for further development and commercialization. Any royalties derived from any such license are shared with the inventor(s) and their departments according to M.I.T. Policy (see Section 4.7 of the "Guide to the Ownership, Distribution and Commercial Development of M.I.T. Technology").

The purpose of this form is to notify the TLO of your potential invention and any relevant sponsorship and publication history. The form also serves to establish a legal record of the date of conception of the invention. This form should be submitted when something new and useful has been conceived or developed, or when unusual, unexpected or unobvious research results have been achieved and can be used.

II. The following instructions apply to the correspondingly numbered sections on the disclosure form:

  1. Use a brief descriptive title to aid in identifying the technology.
  2. In describing the technology, attach material which covers the following points:
    1. General purpose
    2. Technical description
    3. Advantages and improvements over existing methods, devices or materials
    4. Commercial applications (economic potential, etc.)
    5. Include the names of any co-inventors. A co-inventor is an individual who has conceived or contributed an essential element of the invention, either independently or jointly with others, during the evolution of the technology concept or reduction to practice.
    6. Give the applicable contract or grant number(s), the OSP Project Numbers, and the principal investigator on the project(s) if the invention was made in connection with any sponsored research.
    7. Significant use of M.I.T.-administered resources - whether funds or facilities - will normally give rise to M.I.T. ownership rights in an invention. See M.I.T. Policies and Procedures for further discussion of significant use.
    8. In the United States, a patent application must be filed no later than one year after public availability of a printed publication disclosing the invention in detail (use of overheads or blackboards may be considered written disclosures). In other countries, filing must take place before either oral or printed publication is made available to the public; however, where there has been a U.S. filing before any oral or printed publication, generally a one year grace period is granted for foreign filing. Complete all parts of section 6 in view of the following:
      1. Conception, in the patent-law sense, involves the formulation, in the mind of the inventor, of the complete means for solving a problem. The mere recognition of a desirable result, or of a problem, or of a general approach to solving the same, without the formulation of the physical structure to accomplish that result or to solve the problem, will not suffice to constitute conception.
      2. The term "first publication" means the first time any member of the general public (those outside the M.I.T. community), without restriction of confidentiality, would have been able to legally gain access to your written or printed enabling description of the invention.
      3. "First public oral disclosure" means the same as 6B, but only as to oral presentation to the general public (those outside the M.I.T. community).
      4. The anticipated date of publication, (as described in 6B above), should be entered here, as well as the date any documentation was submitted for review for possible publication.
      5. Reduction to practice, according to patent law, involves actual and complete use of the invention for its intended purpose. Such reduction to practice generally involves physical construction of the invention and testing the physical embodiment to determine whether it performs as contemplated, but this is not always necessary if the invention can be fully described.
      6. A list of commercial entities that may be interested in the invention will assist the TLO in identifying potential licensees for the technology. Please include names and addresses of specific contacts if known.
      7. Your lab books and/or other records of your technology should be witnessed by a person who has read and understood your disclosure. It is recommended that this form also be witnessed; such witnessing is required in the case of Media Laboratory or Lincoln Laboratory disclosures. If the principal investigator is not an inventor/author, he or she is often the best witness.
      8. When completed, submit this form to the Technology Licensing Office, Room NE18-501, x3-6966.
      III. For further information see "M.I.T. Policies and Procedures," or the Guide to the Ownership, Distribution and Commercial Development of M.I.T. Technology, or contact the TLO at 253-6966 in Room NE18-501.

    Download a Microsoft Word version of the Disclosure Form .