Patexia Contest




Patexia seeks prior art for US Patents 7,922,442 (US ‘442), 8,414,251 (US ‘251), 8,398,365 (US ‘365), 8,562,283 (US ‘283), 8,694,175 (US ‘175), 8,727,700 (US ‘700), and 8,734,086 (US ‘086), which in combination allegedly describe a fan array air handling system which consists of multiple modular fan units that are positioned within an air-handling compartment.

Air handling systems are essential for conditioning and circulating air in buildings. Such systems may be manufactured in a factory and brought to the structure to be installed, or built on site using the necessary devices to meet the functional needs of the structure. The structure of the air handling system described in the above patents is represented in the Figure 1. In general, such a system should include,

  • multiple modular fan units (ideally 5 or more) with each unit including a motor and a fan
  • redundant fans in a common plenum
  • one or multiple variable speed drives to control multiple fans
  • sound attenuators between the fan unit modules to decrease the noise

Figure 1. Structure of an air handling system

Bonus Points

  • +5 for references that are non-patent literature
  • +5 for references published in a foreign language other than English

Learn more about bonus points at our Blog.

Have a question about this contest? Ask a Question


1Was the reference filed or published before March 20th, 2003? T/F
2Does the reference describe an air handling system which includes multiple modular fan units (ideally 5 or more) with each unit including a motor and a fan? 40
3Does the reference confirm the existence of redundant fans in a common plenum in the air handling system? 20
4Does the reference confirm that at least one variable speed drive is used to control multiple modular fan units? 20
5Does the reference confirm that sound attenuators (or other similar devices) are used to reduce the noise of the air handling system? 20

Additional Notes

Prior Art Search

This is a Prior Art Search contest aimed at determining if a patent idea was known and publicly available before a patent was filed.

This contest will close on Sunday, November 30th, 2014 at 11:59 PM PST.

Please review the Contest Rules. For more information on how to submit to this Contest type, please read the Intro to Prior Art Search page.

Please review the full list of known references.