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Two UC3M patents, award for the best protected inventions from the OEPM


The Oficina Española de Patentes y Marcas (OEPM; Spanish Patent and Trademark Office) has recognised two patents from Universidad Carlos III de Madrid (UC3M) in the latest edition of its ‘Awards for the Best Invention Protected by Industrial Property Rights’. The purpose of these awards is to distinguish the protection of research results through patents and utility models granted during the year 2022 and are a recognition of researchers and innovators and their inventive and creative work.

UC3M award winners

Photograph of the UC3M award winners taken at the award ceremony held at the School of Industrial Organisation on the afternoon of 6 June: on the left, José Carlos Castillo Montoya; in the middle, Alberto Sánchez González; on the right, Roberto Fernández Fernández.

The Best Spanish Patent Award went to researchers Alberto Sánchez González and José Carlos Castillo Montoya, from the Energy Systems Engineering Group of the UC3M Dept. of Thermal and Fluids Engineering and the RoboticsLab of the UC3M Dept. of Systems Engineering and Automation, respectively, for their patent ‘Procedure and system for aligning the facets of a heliostat in a solar field’ (P202030725). This invention describes a method for aligning the facets of a solar field heliostat in a simpler, more precise and more economical way than other systems. 

‘This patent arises from the problems with existing techniques for aligning the facets (the individual specular elements) of heliostats, as they are either time-consuming or inaccurate,’ explain the authors of the patent. ‘The procedure and system for aligning the facets of a heliostat in a solar field offers an accurate technique that allows for simpler and faster assembly and maintenance in the solar plant compared to other methods,’ they point out.

UC3M also received a special mention in the category of Best Patent by a young inventor (under 40 years of age) for the patent ‘Device and method for characterizing the rough profile of a tissue sample’ (P202030210), by Roberto Fernández, Asier Marcos and Jorge Ripoll, from the University's Bioengineering Department. This invention in the field of microscopy describes a device designed to obtain useful information for the characterisation of rough tissue samples and three procedures to determine different parameters with it, such as the degree of anisotropy of the sample, its roughness frequency and amplitude, and the local average velocity of movement.

"The patented device makes it possible to determine changes in tissue structure indicative of inflammation and tumors using optical technology. This facilitates the early detection of various abnormalities, even before they show visible signs, says the developers.‘This technology can be implemented as a module in endoscopes (in vivo diagnostic tests) and microscopes (in vitro diagnostic tests), demonstrating its diagnostic efficacy in oesophageal or colon cancer,’ they add. 

This is the third edition of the ‘Awards for the Best Inventions Protected by Industrial Property Rights’, which have established themselves as a benchmark for the General State Administration's support for innovation and its protection by means of industrial property rights. The purpose of these awards is to distinguish the protection of research results through patents and utility models granted during the year 2022.

The protection of research results at the University is carried out through its Servicio de apoyo al Emprendimiento y la Innovación (Entrepreneurship and Innovation Support Service), located in the Centro de Innovación en Emprendimiento e Inteligencia Artificial (C3N-IA; Centre for Innovation in Entrepreneurship and Artificial Intelligence), at the Parque Científico UC3M (UC3M Science Park).