I saw a similar question, but wanted a more detailed answer re: Patent Expired Due to NonPayment of Maintenance Fees Under 37 CFR 1.362
I was about to file a patent when I saw a very similar idea which had expired due to non-payment several years ago. I don't know why manufacturers have not utilized the idea. Perhaps because the technology didn't exist to implement the idea during the time-frame that the patent was active.
Can I submit a similar idea with a few changes due to advancements in technology and get it patented?
If not, can I publish a paper with my own upgraded designs and pitch it to manufacturers for licensing privileges?