When and how did it become possible to apply for 3D models?

According to article 1351 of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation, a technical solution related to the device is protected as a utility model. A utility model is granted legal protection if it is new and industrially applicable.

Previously, in order for an application for obtaining a patent of the Russian Federation for a utility model to meet the requirements for its design, namely, to meet the sufficiency of disclosure, to be clear to a specialist in this field of technology, in 95% of cases the description was supported by drawings of the general design of the device with design details. The description contained a section entitled "Brief description of drawings", which provided detailed explanations of what parts the device consists of and how they are interconnected.

From the beginning of 2021 in order to expand the use of electronic technologies in the registration of intellectual property objects in connection with the entry into force Federal Law No. 217-FZ "On Amendments to Part Four of the Civil Code of the Russian Federation" dated January 17, 2021, on the basis of which amendments were made to item 2 of Article 1354, subitem 4 of item 2 of Article 1375, subitem 4 of item 2 of Article 1376, subitem 2 of item 2 of Article 1377, subitem 2 paragraph 3 of Article 1492, namely the phrase "drawings"/"set of product images" was supplemented with the words "... three-dimensional models of the invention and utility model in electronic form "/"...at the request of the applicant, a three-dimensional model of the utility model in electronic form".

Thus, at the present time, if there is a need to disclose the essence of his design better, the applicant has the opportunity to attach to the description a 3D model of the claimed technical device in electronic form, if applying in paper form through the FIPS document acceptance window - on a machine-readable carrier in formats: U3D, STEP, OBJ, STL, PRC or if applying through an electronic personal account, attach the appropriate file with the application materials.

Since the provided 3D images, as well as two-dimensional drawings, are used for the interpretation of the claims of the utility model, it allows the applicant to increase the effectiveness of protection of his exclusive right, excluding the errors in the understanding the construction and principle of operation of the device, and also due to the possibility of presentation of the changed claims of the utility model within the responses to the requests of substantive examination of the application by introducing the features visualized from the three-dimensional model, but not disclosed earlier in the description.

For many applicants working with AutoCAD, Compass-Graphics, Solid Works, Compass-3D, CATIA, and other popular computer-aided design systems, including those for three-dimensional modeling, it is not difficult to prepare a three-dimensional model for an application in electronic form.

Moreover, this model allows to make it easier for the examiner to understand the distinctive features of the design of the claimed device by increasing the visual perception, and for the applicant to increase the chance of recognizing the utility model corresponding to the conditions of patentability "novelty" and "industrial applicability".

Besides, especially for Rospatent SPbPU in cooperation with "I-Teco" developed an intellectual system called "Intellectual Property 3D" ("IP 3D") that allows to attach files to applications electronically and compare 3D digital models proposed by applicants with the objects already in the database, which in the near future will help the experts to significantly reduce the search time. To date, according to data from public registries of inventors for the past year have already submitted more than a thousand such applications.

It is worth noting that the opportunity to characterize a technical solution by a three-dimensional model is possible not only in the utility model application, but also in such objects of intellectual property such as inventions, industrial designs, and trademarks. However, in practice, for applications for utility models, the representation of the three-dimensional model proved to be a more popular option due to the fact that, unlike the invention, only devices are protected as a utility model.

However, on 03.02.2021 the invention application was filed in Russia. The application № 2021102385, illustrated by means of the file of a three-dimensional model in electronic form, for which the RF patent № 255174 "A ribbed dome of glue-decker arch trusses", published on 13.09.2021, has already been received. The format of the attached file: *.stl. The presented three-dimensional model of the dome frame includes an assembly of glued wooden arch trusses and other structural parts and elements.

Thus, due to the direction of IT technology development by Rospatent, applicants can now disclose the essence of their development in more detail, and examiners can promote patent search faster, better understand the essence of the proposed solution and evaluate its patentability, therefore, if this is possible, all inventors are recommended to submit applications using this new meeting.

Patent Attorney / Chemical Specialist