I'm a Ph.D. student, and recently in my research I came up with an algorithm that would save the use of multiple transmitters to one transmitter. My co-supervisor believes it's a patent and he wants to file for one. Unfortunately, he was trying to get my work to himself till I made it clear that I will not share my my work and simulations. After that he told me he wants to file for a patent.

My main supervisor doesn't want to file for one "he is not interested". I'm sponsoring myself "I'm paying all the fees of my studies", so in that case can I file for a patent for myself?.


Talk to your supervisor, co-supervisor, and your university's intellectual property office. Everyone should be on the same page. Some things to consider:

1) All inventors must be listed on the patent application. Even if an inventor doesn't want to apply for a patent, if you pursue a patent for the invention their name still has to be on it. If you leave out a co-inventor and it is later discovered, your patent may be invalid. If you're working with your co-supervisor, he is probably a co-inventor. It would be very unusual in a research group to not have your supervisor listed on the patent as a co-inventor.

2) You may not have rights to your patent. Even if you get a patent, you may be under an obligation to assign the rights to your university.

3) Trying to get a patent, while cutting your supervisor and co-supervisor out of it, is probably going to create bad blood in your research group and hurt your progress toward a PhD. Your relationship already sounds bad - perhaps you need to be in a different group.

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