The smart excavators of the future

Engineer Eneko Goenechea is planning a new hydraulics innovation. Following an Assisted Patent Search, one thing is clear – the project is feasible.

There is still a lot of potential for invention in the field of hydraulics. Picture: PD.

Bucher Hydraulics AG is an international company based in Switzerland. It develops and manufactures hydraulic components and systems used in construction machinery, agricultural technology and elevators, as well as in presses and wind turbines. Engineer Eneko Goenechea is researching the development of the technology at the company’s head office in Switzerland. He has worked at the company for 15 years and has headed up the advanced technology division for three years.


The inventor’s two questions

During the innovation process, Eneko Goenechea used the Assisted Patent Search offered by the Swiss Federal Institute of Intellectual Property (IPI). The information obtained from the search formed the basis of a research project and a patent application for the invention has since been filed. He still recalls the IPI search (which took place pre-COVID). His preparation for the meeting with the patent expert paid off. “It helps if you can describe your own invention or activity really precisely. That way, the expert can look into the patent data in a more targeted manner,” he explains. Eneko Goenechea was impressed with the quality of the search results.


As a potential inventor, the engineer had two questions: Is the idea already protected? Or is the invention so novel that he could claim it for himself? In the latter case, the invention must have the necessary inventive step and novelty. Besides the technical issues, he was also very interested in the legal aspects. He explains that for an engineer, it can be difficult to find the right legal wording.


(Kopie 17)


The patent expert was conversant with the language of hydraulics

“I describe the patent as a legal document, because it can be used directly as evidence in legal proceedings, like a contract or debt certificate,” says Eneko Goenechea. The author of the document (often a patent attorney who is not familiar with the field in question) attempts the impossible – to describe the invention using human language in a clear and unambiguous way. “At the same time, even within the expert community, there are many terms for the same things. This results in terminology that you have to learn like a foreign language or a very strong dialect. It helps to have an expert at your side who speaks this language and who is also an expert in the relevant technical field. This was true in my case – the IPI staff member was fully conversant with the language of hydraulics.ˮ


[Translate to English:] Begleitete Patentrecherche: Ihre Idee unter der Lupe

[Translate to English:]

Innovativen KMUs, Startups, Einzelerfindern und öffentlichen Forschungseinrichtungen bietet das Eidgenössische Institut für Geistiges Eigentum (IGE) Begleitete Patentrecherchen an. Ein Patentexperte gibt Auskunft zum Patentwesen und recherchiert gemeinsam mit Ihnen in verschiedenen Datenbanken. Mit der Begleiteten Patentrecherche erhalten Sie einen ersten Überblick zum Stand der Technik und Sie können einschätzen, ob Ihre Idee neu ist. Das Resultat ist die ideale Basis für die weiteren Schritte, wie z.B. eine Patentanmeldung oder Gespräche mit Investoren.


Weitere Informationen: Begleitete Patentrecherchen

Back to all blog articles

Share article