What can be patented

2 IP Australia staff members having a meeting around a document

You can apply for patent protection for a range of inventions. These include traditional inventions such as appliances, mechanical devices and so on.

However you may also protect things such as:

What cannot be patented?

You cannot patent human beings or the biological process for their generation, artistic creations, mathematical models, plans, schemes or other purely mental processes.

If your invention has military aspects, you need to be aware that the Commissioner can prohibit publication of applications in the interests of the defence of the Commonwealth.  If this happens, a patent will not be granted.  Also, the Defence Export Control Office regulates the export of defence and strategic goods and technologies.  

Last Updated: 15/4/2015

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