The public domain patent search engine is a tool developed by the National Institute of Industrial Property (INAPI), made available to the public free of charge. It contains all patents applied for in Chile since 1840 until today that have expired and are thus part of the national public domain.
This tools furthers INAPI’s mission to disseminate the technological assets and information it has access to.
Although there is no internationally accepted definition, in the field of industrial property, the term public domain technologies refers to creations (e.g. patents, utility models, industrial designs) that are not protected or whose protection has been voided or expired due to the period of validity of ending.
Becoming familiar with public domain technologies can be very useful for entrepreneurs, small and medium-sized companies, and researchers, as they can function as stimulus for the development of new creations, to identify technologies that can be incorporated into productive processes, to avoid duplicating research, to evaluate the patentability of a creation, or to commercially exploit or invest in said technologies.
The fact that a technology is in the public domain cannot be interpreted as an exception to compliance with laws and public order regulations that govern the development, transformation, management, production, manufacture, distribution, and commercialization of said technology. Also, always keep in mind that the same product can incorporate several different types of intellectual property, in which case the same technology can have expired protections for some types of intellectual property but not for others.
The information divulged in citations of public domain technologies are not necessarily also in the public domain. For this reason, the titleholder of said divulged information should be consulted for its status, for which we recommend always obtaining express authorization.
Finally, you should keep in mind that an invention could be in the public domain in Chile but remain under protection in other countries.