NASA - George Mason University

Performance

Metrics

Workshop:

for R&D Organizations

March $1999
“NASA:

Measuring

the R&D Payoff’

Sylvia K. Kraemer
Director of Policy Development
Office of Policy and Plans
NASA

While there may be a few new things under the sun, attempts to measure the “payoff’ for
R&D at NASA is not one of them.

In the 1970’s, as public interest in space exploration

Apollo waned, and the costs of the Vietnam war continued
budget requests by showing significant
NASA-funded

econometric

spent, it returned from $7 to $14 to the U.S. economy.
technologies

to grow, NASA struggled to justify its

returns to the economy from its programs.

studies claimed to demonstrate

after

A series of

that for each tax dollar the Agency

Cost-benefit

studies of various NASA

-- from cardiac pacemakers to zinc-rich coatings -- purported to prove cost-benefit

ratios from 4: 1 to 340: I.

Unfortunately,
performance

these findings -- early efforts at quantitative

-- did not survive close scrutiny.

validate them, noting that the excessive
made the studies’ findings

unreliable.

Department of Labor: who concluded

measurement

The General Accounting

of R&D

Office (GAO) could not

number of variables in their econometric

equations

GAO’s concerns were echoed by statisticians
from their own, more conservative,

at the

estimates that returns

on private sector R&D tend to be between 15% and 30%. while returns on Government
between 0% and 5%. In 1986 the Office of Technology
attempted macroeconomic

Assessment

R&D vary

offered this assessment of

proofs of R&D returns:

The factors that need to be taken into account in research planning, budgeting, resource
allocation, and evaluation are too complex and subjective; the payoffs too diverse and
incommensurable;
and the institutional
barriers too formidable to allow quantitative
models to take the place of mature, informed judgment.’

Manipulation
measure technological

of econometric

formulas was not the earliest attempt to quantitatively

change and resulting economic value.

Prior to World War II Simon

Kuznets and Robert Met-ton sought to trace the rate and dispersion

of technological

change

1 Science Policy Study, Background Report No. 12, Office of Technology Assessment, (Washington, DC: 1986).

2127199

1

through patent data.
particular

Their work resulted in the observation

industries reach points of diminishing

returns.

that technological

improvements

in

After World War II further work on

patents was done by Jacob Schmookler who disproved the popular notion among many
university

scientists that technological

progress is driven by advances in basic science.

landmark finding, Schmookler concluded

that the stimulus to the inventions

In a

he surveyed could

be identified in very few cases, and
. ..For almost all of these that stimulus is a technical problem or opportunity conceived by
the inventor largely in economic terms,... When the inventions themselves are examined
in their historical context, in most instances either the inventions contain no idenjfiable
scientific component, or the science that they embody is at least twenty years old.

Schmookler’s
qualitative

work is important because it combines quantitative

information

-- assessments

in trade and technological

data -- patents -- with
literature -- to answer not only

the question, “How Much?“, but the related and more important question for policy-makers,

“How

and Why?”

This brings us to the present and the burden the Government

Performance

and Results

Act (GPRA, 1993) places on R&D agencies to measure the success of their programs.

At one

extreme, we have the basic research die-hards who want us to believe that basic science is so
motivationally

pure, and so exalted in the talents it requires, that its essence cannot be captured

by anything so crude as a simple number.

At the other extreme, we have the marketers of

simplistic formulas, who would have us simply measure success by counting the number of
patents assigned to, or articles authored by, researchers

Unfortunately,

neither patent nor publication

the number of patents does necessarily
profitable inventions.

in various organizations.

counts aggregate uniform values.

Twice

yield twice the number of useful or commercially

Twice the number of science citations does not produce a two-fold

increase in our understanding

of a natural phenomenon.

To develop the valid generalizations

about causes and effects needed for informed R&D policy development
must assemble qualitative
tell us about the incentives,

as well as quantitative
circumstances

information.

and management,

The qualitative

and facilities behind particular

information

we
may

technological

2 Schmookler’s conclusions were based on his study of patents issued in key capital goods industries (agriculture, petroleum
refining, paper making, and railroading) since 1874, and 934 important inventions in producers’ goods industries.
“Importance” was based on attention given to the invention in trade and technical literature. Jakob Schmookler. lnvenfion
and Economfc Growth (Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press, 1966) p. 67, pass/m.

2/27/99

2

I assembled a database of all patents assigned to NASA from 1976 to 1996. now available technology years. or the Federal budget. While conventional information combined with licensing and with what results. However. made by its however. Randomly-sampled understand. With the help I added to this database the licenses issued by NASA to various firms to use patents assigned to the Agency during this period. can help US return lies. Some of those observations will have ramifications for NASA patent policy. under what circumstances. A fourth category of NASA patent data are the 1716 “patent waivers” NASA has granted in response to requests from private sector organizations from whom NASA has procured goods or services. to waive those rights. This project began several years ago as an assessment of NASA patent policy. allows us to randomly sample any individual’s 1976.innovations and their successful be coupled with quantitative Comprehensive inventions. I prefer to use 20 patents are a mountain full of precious metals waiting to be mined. where the greatest potential for R&D investment And.3 By analyzing to which the USPTO’s examiners the patent classifications Then I had assigned each and every NASA represented by the more than 2600 patents assigned to NASA between 1976 and 1996. Dissatisfied with the reliance of so much of R&D policy on anecdotal evidence and comparative funding trends. The application for a Patentsare classifiedby USPTO examinersby technologicaland functionalprinciples. with more certainty. this qualitative methods that allow us to generalize patent data for any organization This resource. commercialization. Patent and Trademark Office. NASA is also authorized.” On average. 2127199 3 . Studies of randomly-sampled (rather than anecdotally selected) patents can produce reliable about who invents. while licenses issued to NASA represents 13%. 4 The Space Act vests in NASA patent rights to all inventions contractors. these generalizations. patent waivers represent 65% of total number of NASA patents for the period. of some of NASA’s intellectual property attorneys. we can begin to make some interesting observations about what happened to Federal tax dollars dedicated to aerospace R&D in NASA. wisdom regards 15 years as the average time required for a to mature from inspiration generalizations must on-line thanks to the U.S. our firm’s capital. whether we are investing 401 (k) plans. to be on the safe side. and commercialization information. a 20 year period that brings us as close to the present as possible and covers the period between the post-Apollo let-down in NASA’s budget and the ramp-up for the Shuttle program.to easethe examiner’ssearchfor rior art. gives us a catalogue of its patentable or organization’s patented inventions since to production. added the classifications patent. from particular case studies.

The Federal government’s 1960.S.5 billion to $171 billion. or 1976-19961 By share of national R&D spending declined to 35%. how much more than 3%? 5 Nabonal Science Board. 1996” (National Science Foundation. having dropped below 50% by the time Ronald Reagan was elected to office (1 980). and other fees. Office averged around 3%. in 1960 the exceeded $92 billion.5 From 1976 to 1996. [ Graph: Federal R&D Expenditures vs. and in 1995 that portion had slipped to less than 5%. dropped to less than 5% of Federal R&D expenditures in the early 1980’s. or by a multiple of 13. NASA’s R&D budget. Examining that the contractor suspects may or to protect its business position in a particular patent waivers offers a systematic approach to identifying benefits to aerospace technologies : NASA’s # in the private sector. by From 1960 to 1995. of which only about 10% went to R&D. the portion of the Federal budget going to R&D had dropped to 5%.patent waiver normally reveals the nature of the technology have value -. Federal government Meanwhile. which was about 13% of the Federal R&D budget in 1960.S. This seems a low figure. customs. as well as employees we But. was $8. Secondly. By 1980. in the last ten years it has recovered steadily.whether for its own development. However.S. share in The most significant shift in relative funding for R&D by the began in the early 1980’s. 1996) 6 Total outlays less receipts from taxes. as amended) vests in NASA the property rights to all inventions made by its contractors should expect more than the 3% seen government-wide. consider the portion of national spending for R&D represented investments in NASA R&D. Fable: Federal R&D Expenditures 1995. the 3% of all U. the Federal government’s Patent and Trademark R&D represents share of all patents issued by the U. and in 1996 was a little over 10% of the Federal R&D budget. “Science and Engineering Indicators. the Federal government’s v. NASA R&D Budgets. (NASA being one of retain property rights in the inventions made by So. For example. market segment. Federal government and academic institutions. about half of what it had been 35 years earlier. This phase of my project is not yet T=- complete. both public and private U. NASA R&D Budgets ] What level of patenting did NASA have over this period? Because The Space Act (1958. patents assigned to all agencies of the is probably as good a baseline as any. 2127199 4 . including money passed through industrial about 65%. spending for R&D grew from $13. until we realize that only a small fraction of Federal activities net outlays6 of the Federal government and outlays. with few exceptions them) Federal agencies do not automatically their contractors or grantees. For context.7 billion.

620 patents to its during 1976-I 996. patent waiver figures for other Federal agencies. owning twice as many patents doesn’t make us twice as capital-rich. 1976-19961 however. During this same period. housing is $100. in 1995-l 996. Budgets vs. to We can.1 billion.000.31 1 patents per year. we cannot compare NASA’s total patenting activity to that of the entire Federal government. at an average public cost of $50 million each. make comparisons In the case of the Federal government today or between dollars invested in R&D and patent the annual R&D expenditure performer).71 6 inventions which it might otherwise Without comparable have retained title.costs me $100. and most recently. again in 1986. NASA % Federal [ Graph: NASA % Federal R&D Patenting] If an object -.S. patents assigned to the Federal government. we can translate the direct public “cost” of a patent into a “value” If you paid for the R&D behind my patent. however. or three times [Chart: This percentage was not constant throughout Analysis of NASA the 20-year period. own inventions While NASA has received 2. tomorrow. then the “value” to me of that patent on the day I acquire it (not counting 2/27/99 If you paid for my house. to my Likewise. Since patents have no inherent or uniform value. yield. It dropped below 10% during 1979-l 982. in turn. Another data source of indeterminate available for the total Federal government but potential value -. overall. patents assigned to NASA represent a significant increase in inventive activity over and above that of the Federal government Attaching dollar value to patents is perilous business. Between 1976 and 1996. the more conservative However. were Given the time lag of several years between invention these two “spurts” likely resulted from R&D activity associated and patent with the Shuttle and Space Station programs.one that is not readily -. assignment. averaged $62. can serve as another baseline. while the direct public “cost” of each NASA patent averaged $40 million. the Agency also waived patents rights to I.Two decades of invention and patenting is long enough to establish a quantitative trend in NASA patenting which. between 1976 and 1996. its monetary value to me at the time I bought it was $100. of total Federal patenting. NASA’s portion of all patents assigned to the Federal government averaged the proportion of U. then the value of your contribution legal and associated fees).let’s say a house -. for its owner.000. the overall Federal government averaged I.is the number of waivers NASA has issued to private sector firms of rights to NASA inventions. as a percentage 1983-85 and 1989-93. Patent Data.000. is what you paid that I did not have 5 . (as both source and This figure can be used to gauge the direct public “cost” of Federal R&D. representing an increase in patenting activity of 65%. NASA’s best patenting years. even using baseline figure of 1O%. lo%.

The “end game” for all policy research. patents its “value” in my own cost avoided. Depending cases will illustrate either successes or failures. but to carry out the various programs designated appropriations legislation.8 billion. . is $40 million. To make are likely to result in inventions are not. or cases. This does not seem to be a bad return. NASA issued 1716 patent waivers. Since it is practically we must settle for case studies. a sum which equals 64% of the total NASA R&D budget for the two decades. NASA Patent $Value. Until we have comparable information funded R&D performed by other agencies. effective R&D policy. but as a comprehensive collected basis for random selection. useful for R&D policy or management. and waiver data allows us to do. Beyond this.to pay for. and what circumstances examine each and every patented invention. this is what comprehensive. the But. on the argument being made. so the aggregate “value” to their receipients of 1716 waivers of NASA patent rights was $68. However. Y is likely to result “for this reason”. license. The best way we have of identifying examples remains random selection from a total population. the usefulness of patent data (as well as license and waiver data) lies not in the arithmetic we can do with their numbers. Government what you paid for the R&D behind the [Chart: Estimated Patent. but it is nearly everything. has relied to some extent on examples. Is this a good or a bad thing? That all depends on the policy objectives of our National R&D investments. is a significant by the Congress in NASA’s annual industry and universities. or it might have cost me more. Estimated “Cost” of avg. But at least at the point that I acquired the patent. and of Avg. and impossible to But which cases should we study? Virtually every discussion of Federal R&D policy. depends entirely on how representative they are of a given organization’s R&D. and systematically This may not seem like much. and many other kinds of research. whether the cases lead to valid generalizations. we need to know what circumstances effective development. about Federally all we can say is that there return to the private sector on R&D dollars spent in NASA. considering that the purpose of NASA R&D budgets has not been primarily to spin-off patentable inventions. over and above the Agency’s accomplishment of its programs. representative And. I might have been able to get the R&D done cheaper. whether historical or contemporary. If you do X. is an accurate generalization about how things work. before I invested in bringing a product to market (the outcome of which I can only speculate). U. long-term patent. All NASA Patent Waivers] Between 1976 and 1996. As the average “cost” or “value” of a patent resulting from NASA funded R&D.S.

Identifying randomly selected cases is the next phase of this project.: includes ] What we see clearly from have resulted not only in producers’ War II sector. 2/27/99 7 . operated by the University of Georgia. have requested patent waivers or space technology. So. gathered some of the qualitative information between R&D policy. And NASA holds copyrights to some software developed by a contractor. the R&D sector. I have causal relationships Thanks to the extraordinary resource of the U. But. Patent and Trademark Office’s (USPTO) on-line database. And.B. or otherwise. bequest.S. Clusters” [Chart: N. I will have to assume that the actual or anticipated inventions are likely to fall in technology [Chart: “Distribution only those classes for which NASA contractors classifications of NASA Patented primarily of interest to the aerospace industry. the largest area of technology not peculiar to aeronautics and engineering during or testing” (or research instrumentation). I’ve grouped these classes into technology “Distribution N. defined by technological which patent examiners assign patent applications. there are some surprises here. it is possible to identify the areas of technology to which NASA has contributed. Meanwhile. little more sense of this map. A “patent class” is a category. historians and functional principles. but goods for a distinctively post-World to determine the economic consequences clusters. as most historians will tell you. if assigned to it by the contractor. I have been able to determine the patent class distribution Using the of the 2.B. until FYQQ) will sell or lease NASA software at cost.7 (For the time being. COSMIC (Computer Software Management and Information Center.620 patents assigned to NASA from 1976 to 1996. USPTO database. out “prior art” for an invention. As difficult as it is it is doubly difficult to ascertain the economic value of improved research instrumentation. of technology affected by NASA inventiveness is but belongs to the whole universe of scientific research and development. 7 Note on Software: While the Space Act vests patent rights to inventions made by NASA employees or contractors in the agency. the numbers appear to go “all over the map.” To help us make a of NASA Patented only those classes Innovations in which NASA received Among Technology 5 or more patents these clusters is the extent to which NASA’s innovations goods. NASA (along with other Federal agencies) is prohibited from copyright protection for ‘tYorks” (including software) made by its contractors or employees. to Their purpose is to ease the task of seeking This results in a fortunate symbiosis for patent examiners and because we are both interested in the content of technological change.) Innovations in which NASA received By simple rank order. of R&D investments. however. the overwhelming this twenty-year Among Patent Classes” 5 or more patents ] After that. technological and scientific and engineering improvements in instrumentation progress go hand in hand. receive and hold copyrights transferred to it by assignment. A Federal agency may. necessary to begin establishing and innovation. management.: /ncludes number of NASA’s patented innovations period have occurred in “measuring and aeronautics.

are those involving bio. biochemical processing and information are the ones popularly thought to be the chief engines of modern economic. which can have a substantial The most objective documentation NASA’s patent licenses.and physical chemistry processes. 2127199 8 . in the general area of energy generation Our data is as complete as the files: probably not 100% 13% of all patents.both electrical are inventions and chemical. synthetic materials and adhesives. technologies processes). just as they generated relatively few that have stimulated the most licensing interest -. complete. since the aircraft industry probably owns most patents in aviation technologies NASA patents.* for 338 licenses issued during 1976 to Is that a lot? Until we have a better feel for what a rate for an R&D organrzation with vested patent rights is. and information electric motors. The most fundamental made. in NASA’s intellectual 1996. namely.and thus commercial interest -. representing : Bringing up the rear of patent classes in which NASA has received 5 or =’ more patents throughout technologies.surgery. and after aeronautics. aeronautics. and -. the 20-year period are communications The relative infrequency is most interesting then stock materials or and information of patents in communications since these technologies materials. advances in processes and products. is between consumer goods --which are highly visible to the public -. The number of NASA patents licensed IS 193. and social change. note also that communications relatively far down This is not a great surprise. does commercial interest little licensing The NASA inventions processing interest. of private sector interest in NASA inventions to be are I assembled a list of those licenses by working through the license files property office. we find aeronautics the list with less than five licenses. but close. one. materials (in which we have included biochemical miscellaneous articles. There we found documentation “good” licensing distinction long-term impact on the Nation’s economy. political.and producers’ goods. or indicates a “strong” or “weak” interest in NASA technologies. So I’ll set that question aside and return to the qualitative in NASA patented innovations patents? [Chart: “Distribution follow the same distribution of NASA Patent Licenses Comparing the frequency frequency distribution distribution among technologies Among as NASA Patent Classes”] of NASA’s licenses among patent classes with the of NASA patents among those same classes.the surprise on the list -. we cannot know whether 338 is “good” or “bad”. 8Some licenses have undoubtedly expired: 338 includes licenses requested and issued. however. However. patents in that same field. After that. systems have generated and should have little need to license NASA But. and energy technologies may be more central to our industrial capacity at the end of the 20th century. instrumentation.Next in frequency or propagation of appearance -.

But perhaps surgery is not such a surprise. or 65% of NASA patents.6 billion in R&D regardless of what they ultimately do with those waivers. new ways 9 . be the real prize for tackling the difficult challenge of measuring R&D performance. (5) We can make some preliminary NASA patenting and licensing observations has occurred. indicate where the can be found. ThiB.S government. of $68. on average. development. the questions. patent waiver. the necessary may are still a few turns interim analysis of NASA patent. interest of NASA and mechanisms. If we want to do “more” or “less. assigned to NASA annually (4) We have a benchmark during the same period. “case studies” that will enable us to form generalizations list of NASA licenses: They basis for randomly selecting the about how technological innovations are transferred from NASA to the private sector. and NASA licensing data already suggests some things useful for R&D policy: (1) We have a benchmark for NASA patenting of 10% of patents assigned to the U. representing costs avoided by the waivers’ recipients. beyond the completion aerospace programs for which NASA funds were appropriated. but in the for research. which was the Agency’s average annual R&D budget during 1976-96 divided by the number of patents. While completed case studies of randomly selected NASA inventions down the road. $68. which represent a recent 20 year average. likewise a comprehensive constitute our most complete. areas in which biochemical of the And the pay-off is not in products and services. more than the numbers themselves. if we consider the necessary engineers on miniaturization of instruments As with our patent data-base.” we can answer “more than what?” and “less than what?” (3) We have a benchmark of $40 million as the average cost or dollar value of a NASA patent. and systematically assembled. a baseline drawn from 20 years of NASA R&D.6 billion as the aggregate value of 20 years’ of patent waivers issued by the Agency to the private sector. (2) We have a benchmark for NASA patent waivers. “pay-off’ from NASA R&D investments about the technology These observations the consumer marketplace of popularly recognizable capital goods marketplace. where one acquires instrumentation 2127199 and manufacturing. and other chemical processes.

and the willingness build accurate generalizations for it is that we may have to reach above the proverbial about R&D performance. “low-hanging fruit” for data that allows us to draw valid conclusions Implementing GPRA in our organizations gathering. and the nature of that impact. where we seek sophisticated mechanisms. we have a virtually complete NASA patent and license database from which to draw randomly sampled case studies. (6) Finally. These case studies will. and in medicine. in turn. If there are any interim lessons from this project for those of us responsible implementing GPRA in R&D organizations. and instruments. necessary foundation R&D investments new substances. and how NASA have impacted a larger technological and industrial universe. is likely to require some elementary and extensive and time to go beyond counting numbers to analyzing about effective R&D policies. data the data to . why. give us the for accurate generalizations about when.of harnessing energy.

NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Federal R&D Expenditures vs.4 76 76.8 107/5.2 65 67.5 3.3 3. Source: National Science Board. .7 51.1 4.7 32.5 75. Fiscal Year 1998 (Washington.S. Budget of the U. as Source and Performer.2 2..6 8.: U.8 37.4 78.0 8. (d) Source: HistwicalTables.7 27.NSF 96-333.S.8 71. 1976-l 996 1976 1977 1978 19791980 1981 1982 1983 19841985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991 1992 1993 19941995 1996 To*al'A"g Federal R&D Expenditures 25.4 57.0 6.1997.1 (c) Fed.5 3.7 78. Govt.D.8 3.1 3.5 3.0 7.8 5.9 9.3 7. NASA R&D Budgets. 1997).4 ($Billions):(c) NASA R&D(d) EBillions: 4.0 3. GovernmentPrinting OffKe.3 3.6 30.1 41.3 73.2 77.1 1241162.8 45. National Patterns of R&D Resources.8 75 77.7 5. Govt.1 7.4 3.C.

966L .: 1(PI :s~o!ll!a$ aw VSVN -c (O):(SUO!l(!a$) saJrq!puadx~ c~‘8u lk?Jq%J - .461 8861 S86l t786L E86L 1861 1861 0861 6L61 8L61 U6L 9L61 0 I 08 06 . JeaA 3361 P661 E66L 1661 1661 0661 6861 8861 .” m .

to ease the patent examiner’s search for “prior art”. Entities Patents Assigned to U.2% NASA percent of all patents assigned to US Government = 10% (Range of NASA percent of U. NASA Patenting Compared with U. Government Patents Assigned to NASA 810.S. and functional Patents are not classified by the USPTO into industrial groupings.211 2.620 US Government’s percent of all US patents assigned 1976-l 996 = 3.NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Analysis of NASA Patent Data..348 26. Government Patenting (1976-l Patents Assigned to U.S.S. Government 02/18/99 patents = 5.1% 999) . U. 1976-l 996 Patents are classified by USPTO patent examiners by technological principles.S.S.3% to 13.

Govt.S. NASA % Federal Patenting 16 -No. Patents: NASA R&D $Billions as % of Federal R&D Expenditures @Billions): .NASA % Federal R&D Budgets vs. -tt NASA Patents as % of U.

Each NASA Patent Estimated $Value. Annual Cost. Annual NASA R&D $Billions Avg. Govt. Govt.48 131 $40M Estimated $Value. i Estimated “Cost” of avg.6B 64% . R&D $Billions (performer and source) Avg. Annual Number Patents Assigned to U. AlI NASA Patent Waivers * Number of Patent Waivers Issued by NASA Avg.S. Avg. U.311 $50M $5.S.S. Annual Cost. ii -. Government Patent * Avg. NASA Patent and of avg. Annual Number Patents Assigned to NASA Avg. Each U. Annual U. Annual Cost. Patent Waivers Issued by NASA (1976-l 996) As Percent of Total NASA R&D Budgets * * (A// Data for 1976-7 996) 1716 $40M $68.S. . Govt.NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans -. Each NASA Patent (in $miHions) $62. Patent (in $millions) Avg.1 B 1.

five or more patents in class. all data for 7976-7 996.NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Distribution of NASA Patented Innovations Among Patent Classes * Patent Class: No. radio navigation) Chemistry: Molecular Biology and Microbiology Heat Exchange Chemistry: Electrical and Wave Energy Electrical Heating Joints and Connections wwY * Does not include soflware. Patents: Measuring and Testing Aeronautics Stock Material or Miscellaneous Articles Synthetic Resins or Natural Rubbers Optics: Measuring and Testing Radiant Energy Power Plants Electricity: Measuring and Testing Information Processing System Organization Optics: Systems (including communication) and Elements Electrical Computers and Data Processing Systems Coating Processes Communications: Directive Radio Wave Systems and Devices (e. radar..g. 03’22199 193 123 61 58 57 50 43 35 33 24 23 20 19 15 14 14 13 11 11 * * ‘:‘w __ 4 .

Patent Class: Electricity: Motive Power Systems Batteries (Thermoelectric and Photoelectric) Communications: Electrical Adhesive Bonding and Miscellaneous Chemical Manufacture Electrical Generator or Motor Structure Communications: Radio Wave Antennas Avg.all data for 1976-l 996. Annual No. Classes to Which NASA Pa fends Have Been Assigned Total NASA Patents in Five or More C/asses Percent of Ail NASA Patents. 02122l99 . Five or More in One Class * Does not include software. five or more parentsin c/ass. ii u No.NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Distribution of NASA Patented Innovations Among Patent Classes * (continued. Patents: 10 9 9 5 5 5 7 865 33% .

NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans -Distribution of NASA Patented Innovations Among Technology Clusters * No. Patents: Patent Class: (By Cluster) 193 Measuring and Testing Optics: Measuring and Testing Electricity: Measuring and Testing 57 35 285 Radiant Energy Power Plants Electricity: Motive Power Systems Batteries (Thermoelectric and Photoelectric) Chemistry: Electrical and Wave Energy Electrical Heating Electrical Generator or Motor Structure Heat Exchange 50 43 10 9 14 13 5 14 158 Aeronautics 123 Synthetic Resins or Natural Rubbers Coating Processes Chemistry: Molecular Biology and Microbiology Adhesive Bonding and Miscellaneous Chemical Manufacture (continued) 58 20 15 5 98 .

‘I !j (continued) ..NATIONAL :i AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Distribution of NASA Patented Innovations Among Technology Clusters * .:/: 02l22l99 61 Optics: Systems (including communication) and Elements Communications: Directive Radio Wave Systems and Devices (e. radio navigation) Communications: Electrical Communications: Radio Wave Antennas 24 19 9 5 57 Information Processing System Organization Electrical Computers and Data Processing Systems 33 23 56 Joints and Connections 11 Surgery 11 * Does nor include software.: Patent Class: (By Cluster) Stock Material or Miscellaneous ‘.g. Patents: Articles ij /I !: /j j: . radar./ No. five or more parentsin class. 11-O (: . all data for 1976-l 996.

” indicates four or less licenses in patent class.all data for 1976-l 996. Solid Sorbent._ 10 . No. M. * . or Support Therefor: Product or Process of Making Synthetic Resins or Natural Rubbers Synthetic Resins 10 9 9 9 25 7 WV Radiant Epergy Heat Exchange 19 5 (24) Measuring and Testing 21 (21) Stock Material or Miscellaneous Articles Fire Escape. 1 ’ :. or Scaffold 6 5 (11) Surgery 7 (7) Patent Class All Other Classes * Does nor include software. Licenses in NASA License Record Book: 633. of Licenses in Files: 343. licenses Totals: Electricity: Motive Power Systems Electrical Generator or Motor Structure 63 6 (69) Chemistry: Molecular Biology and Microbiology Adhesive Bonding and Miscellaneous Chemical Manufacture Plastic and Non-metallic Article shaping or Treating Process Catalyst. No. Data based on licenses in files. Ladder.NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION Office of Policy and Plans Distribution of NASA Patent Licenses Among Patent Classes* No.