As soon as you believe you have a potentially patentable invention, you should notify the technology transfer contact office at your campus. The staff of this office will explain how technology transfer is handled at your campus and can provide you with the appropriate Record of Invention (ROI) form. When completed, the ROI serves as the foundation for your invention disclosure. It documents the circumstances under which your invention occurred and provides the information necessary to evaluate patentability, inventorship, desirability of obtaining patent coverage, and obligations to research sponsors outside the University.
Information regarding an invention must be kept confidential until a patent application is filed or certain patent rights may be lost. Most of the information you provide on the ROI is confidential and its disclosure to individuals outside the University could result in the loss of your rights. It is therefore important refrain from discussing the invention or sending the ROI to others, not even the research sponsor until certain confidentiality agreements have been signed by all parties. Your local technology transfer contact office can also assist you with information on such confidentiality arrangements.
Potentially patentable inventions include any new or useful process, device or apparatus, article of manufacture, composition of matter (including chemical compounds, microorganisms, and the like), asexually propagated plant, or related improvement to any of the foregoing, or a new use for a known material or device.