The CLEAN ENERGY PATENT GROWTH INDEX (CEPGI), published quarterly by the Cleantech Group at Heslin Rothenberg Farley & Mesiti P.C. provides an indication of the trend of innovative activity in the Clean Energy sector from 2002 to the present. The CEPGI also ranks the leaders among Clean Energy Patent Owners, along with the countries and the U.S. states which receive the most Clean Energy patents.
The granting of patents by the United States Patent and Trademark Office (PTO) is often cited as a measure of the inventive activity and evidence of the effectiveness of research & development investments. Patents are considered to be such an indicator, because to be awarded a patent, it requires not only the efforts of inventors to develop new and non-obvious innovations but also successful handling by patent counsel to shepherd a patent application through the PTO. Thus, the granting of a patent is an indicator that efforts at innovation have been successful and that an innovation had enough perceived value to justify the time and expense in procuring the patent.
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The CEPGI (shown below annually) tracks the granting of U.S. patents for the following sub-components: Solar, Wind, Hybrid/Electric Vehicles, Fuel Cells, Hydroelectric, Tidal/Wave, Geothermal, Biomass/Biofuels and other clean renewable energy.
U.S. patents for Clean Energy technologies in 2015 were at an all-time high of 3613, edging out the record set for 2014 by four granted Clean Energy patents. Despite more patents granted in Clean Energy than any previous year, this was the smallest year-to-year gain since the total fell from 2006 to 2007.
As depicted below in the breakdown of the CEPGI by its sub-components, Solar patents continued to lead while dropping one percent year-to-year. Hybrid/Electric Vehicle (HEV) technologies grew more than all others with a 30 percent increase over 2014 while the other major players (Solar, Wind and Fuel Cells) actually had a year-to-year drop. Biomass/Biofuels energy patents fell five percent. Fuel Cell patents also fell five percent.
Despite a small decrease of 14 patents, Solar technologies topped the remaining technologies, having 391 patents more than nearest competitor Fuel Cell technologies - a slightly larger margin than the year prior. There were 1224 Solar patents granted in 2015 which gave Solar technologies its third annual win and again reaching a height never reached by any of the other technologies. Fuel Cell technologies made a solid showing, taking a silver medal with 833 granted patents, down from 880 in 2014. Hybrid/Electric Vehicle technologies took third place for the first time in 2015 - jumping 164 patents while Wind patents fell 75 patents. HEV patents were at 685 granted Clean Energy patents and Wind patent owners accrued 548.
Biomass/Biofuel patents (218) were down 12 compared to 2014, while Tidal/Wave energy patents were down 18 to 76 granted patents. Hydroelectric patents fell six to 18 while Geothermal patents lost one to 22. There were 71 Clean Energy patents granted in 2015 in other technologies - an increase of 16.
The top patent owners since 2002 are shown below, ranked relative to total number of patents, and also annotated to show the particular totals for the last several years and a cumulative total for earlier years:
GM retained the overall lead in Clean Energy patents compiled since 2002. Toyota took over the second spot from Honda which had held first place from 2002 all the way up to 2012. GE held in fourth place for the fourth straight year while Samsung retained its spot in fifth place overall as did Ford in sixth. Hyundai took the seventh place from Nissan which fell one rung on the Clean Energy patent owner ladder.
Mitsubishi again took the ninth spot followed by Vestas in tenth place, which jumped over Panasonic compared to last year’s results. Siemens was up a spot over UTC which will likely continue to fall after having sold its Fuel Cell business. GE, Samsung and Vestas are the only non-auto-industry patent owners in the top ten in overall granted Clean Energy patents. Mitsubishi has patents in Wind technology and other Clean Energy technologies other than those related to autos, such as Fuel Cells or HEV's.
The high percentage rise in Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents, compared to the decreases in the other major categories, may portend a long-term hold of the auto industry on the top 10 in granted Clean Energy patents. The long-term totals take into account the fall in Fuel Cell patents and meteoric rise and again leveling off of Solar patents.
If instead we look at the short term, in particular only 2015 (below), over 1500 entities contributed to the record total of Clean Energy patents last year. Toyota topped GM for the second year straight, this time increasing its margin to 58 Clean Energy patents. The Prius maker had 18 more clean energy patents in 2015 versus the year before while GM fell seven patents compared to the year before. Hyundai took the third spot, jumping a place, with 115 clean energy patents which was 14 more than 2014. Samsung fell from third to tenth place falling from 102 to 61 granted Clean Energy patents. Honda again was behind Hyundai accruing 103 granted, up six. Ford, trailing Honda, jumped from eighth to fifth place in 2015by increasing its annual total from 61 to 100. LG was next with 81 granted Clean Energy patents despite not cracking the top ten for 2014. Vestas fell a spot and had seven fewer patents than the year before with 74. As in the cumulative rankings, the auto companies dominated the 2015 clean energy patent owner rankings taking five of the top ten slots, but in a slight change the departure of Mitsubishi from the top ten, and addition of Vestas, reduced the count of auto companies in the top ten compared to last year. The remaining top winners (GE, Siemens) in 2015 were primarily Wind patent holders. LG Electronics made a showing in the top ten - the first time for a Solar manufacturer. As noted previously, while there are a large number of Solar patents, they are spread out to more entities without the concentrations at the top that we see in Fuel Cell and Wind technologies.
As depicted below in the Fuel Cell patent owner breakdown, GM retained the overall lead but barely lost the annual Fuel Cell crown to Toyota by two patents after a similar loss in 2014. GM had 87 Fuel Cell patents in 2015 to edge the Japanese maker of the Mirai Fuel Cell car which is sold only in California and thus far is slow selling. Honda followed in third with 57, down one from a year earlier. Samsung and Hyundai (39) tied for the fourth spot with the former dropping over 20 and the latter falling three compared to the year before. Bloom Energy was next, jumping nine granted Fuel Cell patents versus the year before and beating Nissan (26) by four. Panasonic (19) edged Daimler by one while Kia (15), Ford (14), and Honeywell (12). Others included Toto, Audi, and Suzuki with nine granted. Automakers dominate this list with Bloom, Samsung, Honeywell and Pansonic being notable exceptions.
As indicated, GM remained ahead of Honda for the fifth year to retain the all-time Fuel Cell leader crown, and Toyota takes the third spot in the overall count. Samsung has almost 200 fewer overall Fuel Cell patents than Toyota while Panasonic has over 200 less than Samsung. Nissan, UTC, Ballard, Hyundai and Bloom complete the top ten despite UTC (0) and Ballard (5) accruing small numbers in 2015.
Approximately 300 different entities were granted Fuel Cell patents in 2014 which is similar to the previous year.
Vestas took the annual Wind patent crown for the second straight year by accruing 74 patents with Siemens (66) and GE (49) trailing. Interestingly, Vestas fell six from the previous year, while GE regained its mojo, jumping 13. Siemens edged up two granted Wind Patents. At more than 30 fewer than GE in 2015, Senvion (18) took the fourth spot trailed by Gamesa (14), LM Glasfiber (11), Envision (10) and Alstom Renewable Technologies (10). Senvion was up 11 over the previous year having easily the highest percentage-based jump, and Gamesa was up four and Envision of Denmark up two. Wobben (of Enercon) tied the previous year with nine while Google (6) made a showing in Wind in 2015, tieing SSB Wind Systems. Mitsubishi took a huge fall from 30 in 2014 to 5 one year later.
Looking all the way back to 2002, GE holds a cumulative lead over Vestas by a wide margin. Siemens again held third place overall over Mitsubishi. Aloys Wobben (of Enercon) held his own in the five spot followed by Nordex and Gamesa which jumped a spot over Repower. LM Glasfiber and Hitachi followed.
Nearly 300 different entities were granted Wind patents in 2014.
In the up-in-the-air Solar patent race, LG leaped almost 30 Solar patents to take the number one spot in 2015 with 63, while last year’s winner, Samsung (16) fell to seventh place. Sunpower (overall leader back to 2002) was in second with the same amount (34) of granted Solar patents as the year before. Panasonic jumped from four to 26 patents, easily capturing the most-improved prize, while IBM again took fourth place trailing by 6 patents. Sharp was next - more than doubling its total in 2015 to 18 granted Solar patents and edging Dupont by one, which fell 12 compared to 2014. Following Samsung in seventh, Kyocera (15), Mitsubishi (14) and First Solar (14) rounded out the top ten. Dow (13) was followed by Abengoa (11), and Sandia, Tigo and Boeing tied with 10 granted Solar patents. Sunpower took the cumulative Solar patent crown for the second straight year despite LG outperforming the overall leader in the 2015 race. LG and Samsung followed in second and third places. Dupont took fourth and longtime leader Canon continued its descent to fifth place, tied with Sharp. IBM, Boeing, Sanyo, and Applied materials, in descending order (and in descending order of increases in 2015), rounded out the overall top ten.
Over 700 different entities were granted Solar patents in 2015 which is about one hundred more different entities than the year before and more than any other sector.
Toyota remained at the top of the cumulative Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patent rankings since 2002 and also took top honors for 2015. Ford was again right behind Toyota in the cumulative rankings with Honda, GM, Hyundai and Nissan reprising their roles in the cumulative top ten. Kia stayed in the seventh overall spot followed by Mitsubishi. Aisin and Denso rounded out the overall (back to 2002) top ten with Tesla trailing.
Looking only at the 2015 annual contest, Ford also placed second trailing Toyota (93) by ten and up over thirty granted HEV patents compared to the year prior. As indicated above, Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patent increases outpaced all other technology sectors in 2015. Hyundai had 19 more HEV patents than 2014 to take third while Honda trailed by over 30. Even so, it was up nine compared to the year before. Kia was next, edging GM by one granted HEV patent. GM was down one and Kia up three. Nissan took seventh place for 2015 and was up eight while Mitsubishi (22) had two fewer than Nissan. Suzuki had eight fewer than its Japanese competitor while being up five granted patents in this area. LSIS (13), NTN (12), Bosch (11) and Denso (11) were all grouped closely together. Other notables included LG (7), IBM (5) and Tesla (5). Nearly 200 entities received HEV patents in 2015.
Also, although not depicted above, Ocean Power Technologies continues to lead in the Tidal/Wave sector since 2002 picking up two patents in 2015 to arrive at total of 29 granted US patents in this sector since 2002. Seabased AB has ten overall while Liquid Robotics and Independent Natural Resources hold seven overall.
In 2015 National Cheng Kung University led all others with three granted patents in the Tidal/Wave sector. Bosch added two patents in this area in 2015 as did Mitsui Engineering, Atargis, James Healey and Ocean Power Technologies. Liquid Robotics, Voith Patent, and Rohrer Technologies each added one as did over 70 others.
In the Hydroelectric sector, 22 different entities recorded patents in 2015 including OpenHydro IP Limited with two and the rest with one patent each, including Hitachi, Avista, Leviathan Energy Hydroelectric, and various others. OpenHydro has eight patents overall since tracking began.
Two Geothermal patents were granted in 2014 to McAlister Technologies, LLC while 21 others were granted one patent. Example grantees include Korea Institute of Geoscience and Mineral Resources, Board of Regents, The University of Texas System, and GA Drilling. Kalex, LLC continues to lead in Geothermal patents (eight) overall since 2002 despite not having any patents in 2008-2015. Ormat stays in second with seven. Canyon West has four, and GE three total Geothermal patents since 2002. In the Biofuel/Biomass area, Virent and Shell took the crown for the 2015 patent race with seven patents each, the same total that gave the crown to Chevron the year before. Shell had edged up one while Virent had 4 more than the year before. Sundrop Fuels had 6 Biofuel/Biomass patents in 2015 to take the number 3 spot. API Intellectual Property holdings had 5 granted patents while three companies (McAlister, GE and KIOR) had four patents each. In places 8-12, Exxon, Rockwell Automation, Coskata, Neste Oil, and UOP LL each had three granted patents in this field. Over 160 different entities had one granted Biomass/Biofuel patent including a variety of familiar names, such as the US Navy, the Department of Agriculture, the University of California, Solazyme, BASF, and Honeywell.
Heliae continues to lead the Biofuel/Biomass sector overall since 2002 with 34 granted patents in this area which is 11 more than Virent and 12 more than Chevron overall. Others in the top ten include KIOR (16), UOP (15), Shell (15), McAlister (14), Rockwell Automation (13), Wisconsin Alumni Research (12), and Sundrop Fuels (11).
Looking only at Universities, in 2015 Tsinghau University, from China, for the second straight year, led all other schools with nine granted clean energy patents. National Cheng Kung University came in second with eight edging previous leader, University of California, by one granted patent. The California research institution was up three compared to the year before. Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology and Nat Tsing University again followed in 2015 with six granted patents each. The University of Central Florida tied King Fahd University of Petroleum and Minerals with five granted clean energy patents. At four granted patents were Kookmin University Industry Academy Cooperation Foundation and SNU R&DB Foundation. MIT tied Northeastern University, the University of Akron, Wisconsin Research Foundation and Hanyang University with three granted patents.
As indicated above, the 2015 patents are shown in blue on the right of each bar in the chart below while the chart as a whole shows the cumulative top ten patent grantees since 2002. As is evident from the Cumulative chart, the University of California continues to lead overall in the number of patents granted since 2002 followed by the California Institute of Technology. Korea Advanced Institute vaulted past Stanford to third place. Nat Tsing Hua University jumped ahead of Central Florida which fell two spots, while MIT stayed in sixth place in the overall rankings since 2002. The University of Central Florida and Tsinghau University took the seventh and eighth spots while Penn State was ninth and Wisconsin was in tenth, followed by the University of Illinois and National Taiwan University among university Clean Energy patent grantees.
Turning to the geographical extent of U.S. Clean Energy patents, U.S. patent owners had slightly less than the rest of the world in the number of U.S. patents granted in the Clean Energy field over the period 2002-2015 with 46 percent of the granted U.S. patents as depicted below, which is one percent less than last year's result. Patent applicants from Japan (twenty three percent) and Germany (eight percent) were issued the second and third largest number of U.S. patents since 2002. The US and Japan's percentages dropped one point and Germany's share stayed the same. South Korea, Taiwan, Denmark, and Canada followed as depicted.
In 2015 U.S. entities had fewer Clean Energy patents than the combined total of all other countries receiving Clean Energy patents in the United States by a margin of 1459 to 2154, down 45 and up 49, respectively, relative to 2014. As depicted below in the line chart, the U.S. and Japan continue to dominate all others in the number of granted U.S. Clean Energy patents. Among the countries depicted, the U.S. dropped slightly compared to the year before while Japanese companies jumped over 50 patents to 752 after having added a similar number of granted Clean Energy patents the year before. As illustrated, the U.S. accelerated rapidly from 2010 to 2013 and leveled off more recently. South Korea had another large increase by gaining 33 patents relative to 2014, less than the 115 patents gained the previous year relative to 2013. Germany edged up three patents, much smaller than the 83-patent gain of the year before. Denmark and Taiwan were again separated by just a few patents in 2015 with Denmark at 106 and Taiwan having two fewer.
As indicated in the top ten chart below, China and France swapped positions from the previous year, taking seventh and eighth place, respectively, with China jumping 14 and France dropping 27. Canada (47) fell eight and Spain rose seven to 42 granted clean energy patents in 2015. Great Britain (40) rounded out the top ten in granted clean energy patents.
In the cumulative state Clean Energy patent rankings through 2015, California again topped Michigan with both states having the same share as last year. New York dropped a point to 12 percent of the granted state Clean Energy patents since 2002. Connecticut, Texas and Massachusetts each stayed at four percent of the total. Illinois and Ohio again took three percent and New Jersey had two. Michigan's patent strength rests largely on the Fuel Cell and Hybrid/Electric Vehicle activities of U.S. car manufacturers. California entities have patents in Solar technologies primarily, and many in Fuel Cells and Wind, among others. New York companies have patents in Wind technologies and Fuel Cells. Connecticut has 4 percent of U.S. entities' granted Clean Energy patents since 2002 with most of those being Fuel Cell patents to UTC and other companies.
In 2015 California led Michigan in Clean Energy patents by almost one hundred despite Michigan jumping 38 patents and the Golden state dropping 26. The Empire State again took the third spot even after dropping eight granted Clean Energy patents. Texas maintained its fourth place spot as in 2014 at slightly more than half of New York's total with 69 patents - down eight versus its last showing. Ohio (53) again took the next spot over Massachusetts (43). Colorado tied the home of the Red Sox and was up five to 43 granted patents in Clean Energy technologies. New Jersey had 40 granted patents in the elegant technologies, up 14 compared to the year before. Illinois was one behind with 39. New Mexico trailed only Michigan in its increase over 2014 with 35 granted, up 23 compared to the year before to take the number ten spot.
If instead of looking at individual countries versus the U.S. as a whole, we look at the top U.S. states individually (i.e., separately from the U.S. as a whole) and foreign countries in 2015, Japan led the field with 752 patents followed by Korea with 379, hardly more than half of the Japanese total. California at 359 granted Clean Energy patents took the third spot followed by Germany at 319 and Michigan with 265 patents granted in the Clean Energy area. New York led Denmark by 18 with 124 patents. Taiwan (104) had two less than Denmark and China beat the other contenders with 75 granted Clean Energy patents despite China not breaking out of single digits until 2010.
As depicted below, Fuel Cell patents since 2002 are dominated by the U.S. and Japan, followed by Korea and Germany. The U.S. leads but its share dropped one percent overall to 41 percent while Japan and Korea held steady relative to the year prior. Germany was up one to 7 percent in overall granted Fuel Cell patents. Within the U.S., Michigan's and California’s share were steady at 33 percent and 12 percent, respectively. Connecticut (nine percent) fell a point and compared to 2014 and New York held steady for Fuel Cell patents granted since 2002. Texas, Massachusetts, and Illinois, held steady while New Jersey jumped one percent in Fuel Cell patents since 2002, as depicted.
As shown in the line chart, the US and Japan continued their recent downward trends as did Korea compared to 2014. Germany was up in 2015 and Canada fell in its number of Fuel Cell patents.
In 2015 Japan topped the US for the second straight year while the two countries dropped 25 and seven Fuel Cell patents, respectfully, relative to the previous year. Korea (113) had 16 fewer Fuel Cell patents than the year before and strikes a middle pose on the line chart below the leaders but not quite with the followers below. Germany added 17 more Fuel Cell patents compared to 2014 while Canada fell 6 to arrive at 16. France fell 19 but still was ahead of Canada at 21. Taiwan trailed Canada by two at 14 granted Fuel Cell patents in 2015. Only Great Britain and China among the rest hit double digits with 13 and 11 respectively.
Looking at U.S. states in 2015, Michigan again led all others with 100 Fuel Cell patents, up relative to 2014. California (65) took second in the Fuel Cell race - jumping over twenty compared to the year prior and gaining on leader Michigan - home of which the US automakers, which have shown a keen interest in Fuel Cell technology. New Jersey was next with 18 granted Fuel Cell patents, passing Connecticut (seven) and Massachusetts (10) - last years’ third and fourth place winners - which dropped 11 and four patents, respectively. Ohio also had 11 granted Fuel Cell patents in 2015. New York dropped four to arrive at eight granted Fuel Cell patents.
In Wind energy, the U.S. remained ahead of the rest of the world in the number of U.S. patents granted since 2002, but fell two points to 43 percent, as depicted below, largely on the strength of GE’s Wind patents which have declined from their dominant position of just a few years ago. Germany gained one percent to 19 while Denmark (12 percent) held steady on the strength of Vesta's recent gains. Japan dropped one to 7 percent. Spain, Canada, Taiwan, and China also held their own in single digits. New York is still on top among U.S. states, with 40 percent of the U.S. Wind patents, holding at the same level as the previous year. California followed with 13 percent, one point better than 2014, while Texas held steady at five percent. Massachusetts again had four percent. Florida and Ohio each have three percent. Pennsylvania, Illinois, and New Jersey each have two percent of the U.S. share of Wind patents since 2002.
The US led the world in granted US Wind patents for 2015 with 167 (down 29), besting Germany’s 133, a drop of three from last year. Looking at foreign grantees of U.S. Wind patents in 2015, Germany again took top honors for the fourth year in a row (and eleventh of the last twelve) with Denmark as runner up taking 95 patents in 2015, which was a drop of 13 from 2014. Japan took a nose dive of over 50 percent of its 2014 total to fourth place, passed by Spain, with the Land of the Rising Sun having 21 granted Wind patents to Spain’s 25 despite the latter dropping three compared to the previous year. Korea, Great Britain, China all had 11 granted patents in Wind technologies in 2015, with Great Britain tying its previous total and the other two dropping only one or two patents. Entities from France, Taiwan, and Canada gained nine Wind patents in each country in 2015.
In the U.S., New York again topped the other states in Wind patents in 2015, and jumped 16 patents after having fallen the previous two years. California (34) again took the runner up spot in 2015, adding six patents in Wind technologies. Florida, Texas and Ohio had eight, seven and seven patents, respectively. Pennsylvania and Massachusetts had five, while Washington State and Connecticut had four granted Wind patents each. Entities in 24 other states also had at least one granted Wind patent.
The U.S. percentage of Solar patents since 2002 dropped one point to 53 percent in 2015 after dropping a point a year prior. Japan's share dropped another point in 2015 after dropping every year of the last four. Germany and Taiwan again tied at six percent. Korea jumped a point to seven percent of Solar patents since 2002. California's share of the U.S. total since 2002 dropped a point to 38 percent while New York's share held steady at seven percent. Massachusetts was again at five percent as a cumulative total since 2002. Delaware, Colorado, Michigan, Texas, and Illinois each had four percent of the U.S. Solar patents granted since 2002.
The U.S. led all other countries in granted U.S. Solar patents in 2015 despite its total dropping by 50 patents compared to the year before. Runner up Japan increased its annual total by 37, to 185. Korea made similar gains by adding 23, to arrive at 140 patents while Taiwan (67) fell 11 from its 2014 high in Solar patents, getting edged by Germany. German entities had one more Solar patent than the year before with 70. China (36) added 3 Solar patents and led the other top Solar countries. France was next, falling four from its total from the year before to arrive at 22 granted Solar patents. Also with double-digit totals for the year, Israel had 18 patents, Spain had 15 followed by Canada (13) and the Netherlands (10).
Longtime Solar state leader, California, fell (almost) off a cliff to 191 patents in 2015, dropping 51 compared to the year before. New York had 38 with a less dramatic drop than California’s with 12 fewer than the year before. Michigan (28) was up seven and separated by just one granted Solar patent from Colorado and New Mexico. Colorado was up just two compared to the year before while New Mexico jumped 18. Texas (26) and Ohio (25) were only one granted apart with the Southern state jumping one and its northern competitor jumping three. Illinois dropped three and Delaware dropped 12 to each land at 21 Solar patents for the year. Massachusetts and Pennsylvania had 18 granted Solar patents each with both falling nine or eight from 2014. Twenty-seven other states placed in the Solar patent race in 2015 by having at least one patent granted to one of its residents.
As depicted in the line chart below, California also had more Solar patents than any other country but the race narrowed considerably as only six patents separated the Golden State from Japan.
The U.S. remained in a dead heat with Japan in U.S. Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents since 2002 last year at 39 percent each, with both being down one percent from last year. Korea jumped a percentage point to 10 percent while Germany held steady at 5 percent of the granted US HEV patents.
Michigan dropped a point in 2015 among U.S. state owners of HEV patents since 2002 with 55 percent of the U.S. share of the granted U.S. patents in this area. California was up a point to 15 percent and New York was again at 5 percent. Ohio and Illinois each have three percent while Washington State has two percent and Florida has one percent.
Looking at granted U.S. Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents in 2015 only, the U.S. (253) jumped nearly 70 patents to again barely edge out Japan (251), which rose the exact same amount. The two top countries more than doubled the total of the next, Korea, which itself had more large gains, going from 78 to 105 granted HEV patents. Germany slipped back 11 to 35, after its large gains the previous year. Still far below these leaders were China with 10 granted HEV patents (up 2), and Taiwan (9, up 4). Canada, Great Britain and Sweden each had four, while Australia, the British Virgin Islands, France, the Netherlands, Singapore, and Spain had between one and three. In all, it is interesting to note that only 15 different countries (including the US) scored HEV patents in 2015 which points to the concentration in the auto industry and potentially the inherent costs in working in this area, particularly considering the overwhelming concentration in the US, Japan, Korea and Germany relative to the others.
Relative to Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents in 2015 for the U.S. States, Michigan vaulted 33 patents to 131 while California jumped 19 HEV patents to grab 45, but remained at barely one third of its west coast rival. The only other double-digit accrual in Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents was to New York, which grabbed 10, one less than the year before. Washington State took the fourth spot with eight granted HEV patents - up five over 2014 – leading Kentucky and Illinois by one, each of which were up four patents. Connecticut took seventh place with six patents granted in HEV - five more than 2014. Texas, Oregon, and Georgia all had five granted patents in HEV with Oregon having the biggest change (up four) compared to the year before. Indiana had four and fourteen other states had two or one granted HEV patents. Looking at the line chart below, the U.S. and Japan were in a virtual tie in 2014 and 2015, with the US gaining an edge and for the sixth year in a row. U.S. entities had fewer U.S. Hybrid/Electric Vehicle patents than the rest of the world combined.
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