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Aviation: Patents/Standards

What Are Standards and Patents?


Technical standards lay out the specifications of best practice, as decided by professional bodies of experts, to ensure a certain level of quality, safety, and consistency. Read more from Standards Australia (Australia's peak non-government standards organisation).

Most of you will need to be familiar with technical standards as part of your work. Standards are also useful for research in part because they allow you to compare actual practice and products against what professional groups believe should be done.

Find standards in standards databases, academic databases, and the websites of professional associations. Some databases are below.



Patents are a way of formalising intellectual property rights so that only the owner has the legal right to make or sell the creation. According to IP Australia, the Australian Government agency responsible for administering patents, trade marks and designs, "A patent is a right granted for a device, substance, method, or process that you have invented that is new, inventive, and useful when compared with what is already known."

If you're developing a new idea, check that it has not already been patented by searching on one of the sites below.

Many standards are available only in one location, and only to subscribers. Check what sort of content is available in each database, and log in using the ECU links below to ensure you have access to everything you should. You might need to create a separate personal login as well, particularly if you are trying to access standards produced by Standards Australia.

Most patent websites do not require an ECU login.

The person who registered the patent might not use the same words you would use to describe the invention. Think of synonyms you might use for each term, including technical terms. Try to be specific and accurate to limit the number of results: is there a material or a step in a process that you can use in your search?

Are you looking for Australian patents only, or patents from other countries as well? Some of the links below have international content.

Make sure the site you choose covers the time period you would expect this invention to have been created.

Resources to help you in your search: