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Honda, GE, GM Lead 1Q Clean Energy Patent Race

The Clean Energy Patent Growth Index, which illustrates clean energy patent trends and the top patent owners, shows fuel cells continuing to dominate long term trends, intellectual property law firm Heslin Rothenberg Farley & Mesiti P.C. reports.

Wind patents continue to rise after a third quarter drop, and hybrid and electric vehicle patents continue downward trend that began in early 2007. Solar energy patents also dipped relative to last quarter’s downward trend.

Honda had the most new clean energy patents (16) in the first quarter followed by General Electric and General Motors, with 11 each. Automotive companies dominate the top ten with Nissan, Toyota, and Hyundai in the fourth, fifth, and sixth spots, and Ford ranking tenth.

Tidal and wave energy-granted patents reached a high while geothermal patents also reached a new high.

An analysis of several US states and countries with the largest number of clean energy patents shows that, although dropping slightly from last quarter, Japan leads other contenders in the first quarter with Michigan, California, Connecticut and Germany dropping slightly while New York and Canada had more issued patents this quarter than in the last.

IBM, Nokia, Pitney Bowes, and Sony came together in January in an effort to make a number of environmentally responsible patents available to the public.

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