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Musk vs. Bezos: SpaceX challenges Blue Origin’s rocket-landing patent

Discussion in 'SpaceX' started by chickensevil, Sep 17, 2014.

  1. chickensevil

    chickensevil Active Member

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    Musk vs. Bezos: SpaceX challenges Blue Origins rocket-landing patent - GeekWire

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    Yikes! I hope this doesn't put a damper on SpaceX's ability to do water platform landings in the up coming test flights. How can you patent landing on a floating platform? Man, this is as bad as Apple patenting a shape...
     
  2. tom66

    tom66 Member

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    The patent system is fundamentally broken.
     
  3. chickensevil

    chickensevil Active Member

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    You will get no arguments from me there. Trademarks/IP are even worse... But I digress.

    I didn't think they really did much by way of patents with rockets because that stuff is so sensitive they didn't want to help give people ideas by making the patents.

    I mean this isn't exactly a novel concept.
     
  4. konefunk

    konefunk Member

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    Couldn't agree more. Patenting this idea is utter BS. Its not much different than patenting the use of multi-stage rockets to get into space, or using a high altitude flying platform as the initial launch vehicle. Maybe Space X should counter with a patent on vertical landing.......
     
  5. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Hmm... do patents apply to a test flight? IIRC patent law does not prevent you from building something that infringes and using it yourself. It prevents you from selling it to others.
     
  6. tom66

    tom66 Member

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    Pretty sure it does. There are patents on business processes for example, internal research etc. You can still be sued over infringing even if you don't sell a thing.
     
  7. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Ok, probably if you "make money" from it, even indirectly, then you are infringing. If you make something for personal use then not infringing.
     
  8. rolosrevenge

    rolosrevenge Dr. EVS

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    Has Blue Origin's even had a single successful launch? They seem to be causing a lot of trouble for not producing anything...
     
  9. physicsfita

    physicsfita Member

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    I recall that the patent for communication satellites failed because Arthur C. Clarke described them in detail in one of his novels years earlier. Given the enormous number of 1950's/60's bad sci-fi movies that showed rockets landing on their tail, is there anything novel here?
     
  10. chickensevil

    chickensevil Active Member

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    Right, which is why I think the only thing "novel" is the specific patent covering landing on a floating platform in the water. This doesn't block landing on your tail, just if you happen to be landing on a floating platform on your tail.

    But I agree that isn't much of a stretch, and there is a ton of art surrounding this idea that it is a ridiculous patent.
     
  11. ggr

    ggr Roadster R80 537, SigS P85 29

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    Harriers landing on Ark Royal? That goes back a long way.
     
  12. Johan

    Johan Took a TSLA bear test. Came back negative.

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    It will be vey interesting to see how the Patent Office handles this one...
     
  13. c041v

    c041v Member

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    I'm wondering what the ramifications are if SpaceX just goes ahead and does it. Is it just a fine, or something more serious like jail time? Sitfling innovation through silly patents should be illegal. Make me think of the whole Ford Model E trademark fiasco.

    I wonder if SpaceX could creatively use social media to garner public support saying "We know you've been waiting 50 years to see this really cool rocket landing, but Jeff Bezos won't let us."
     
  14. Doug_G

    Doug_G Lead Moderator

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    Violating a patent deliberately exposes you to triple damages in a lawsuit. Of course proving what the damages are might be a little tricky.
     

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