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40 Years Since First European Patent Application

December, 2018

The EPO published its first European patent application, EP 000 000 1 forty years ago today (20 December 2018). The application related to a “thermal heat pump” and was filed by European Atomic Energy Community. The patent was granted on 7 January 1981.

A batch of 112 applications were published on that day along with EP 0 000 001 including a “Combination lock” (EP 0 000 003), a “Lifting device” (EP 0 000 008), and a “Method for the manufacture of amino-formaldehyde resins” (EP 0 000 096).

EPO President António Campinos states “The EPO has published more than 3.4 million patent applications since – and over 1.7 million granted patents. These documents provide information about the latest developments in all areas of technology. Providing public access to them has always been an integral part of the EPO’s support to innovation in Europe.”

More details at