List of prolific inventors

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The 100 known most prolific inventors based on worldwide utility patents are shown in the following table. While in many cases this is the number of utility patents granted by the United States Patent and Trademark Office, it may include utility patents granted by other countries, as noted by the source references for an inventor.

Prolific Inventors[edit]

Inventor Pats Fams Fam % Pat Yrs Yrs Pat /Yr Inv /Pat Pat Residence Majority Assignment
Shunpei Yamazaki [1] 6276 2789 44.4% 1972—2024 51.8 121 3.6  Japan Semiconductor Energy Laboratory
Kia Silverbrook [2] 4747 1311 27.6% 1994—2014 20 237 1.6  Australia Silverbrook Research
Tao Luo [3] 2939 2464 83.8% 2006—2024 17.7 166 5.6  USA Qualcomm
Kangguo Cheng [4] 2719 1484 54.6% 2004—2024 19.3 141 3.9  USA IBM
Frederick E. Shelton IV [5] 2189 1059 48.4% 2005—2024 18.6 118 4.5  USA Ethicon
Lowell L. Wood, Jr. [6] 1992 1324 66.5% 1971—2024 52.3 38 8.8  USA Intellectual Ventures
Peter Gaal [7] 1978 1527 77.2% 2002—2024 21.5 92 5.9  USA Qualcomm
Junyi Li [8] 1951 1651 84.6% 2002—2024 21.3 92 5.2  USA Qualcomm
Roderick A. Hyde [9] 1888 1252 66.3% 2001—2023 22.5 84 8.7  USA Intellectual Ventures
Wanshi Chen [10] 1883 1464 77.7% 2009—2024 14.8 127 5.7  USA Qualcomm
Chen-Hua Yu [11] 1660 918 55.3% 1996—2024 27.7 60 4.9  Taiwan TSMC
Hanbyul Seo [12] 1558 1142 73.3% 2012—2024 11.8 132 3.8  South Korea LG
Jun Koyama [13] 1476 618 41.9% 1991—2023 32.4 46 3.1  Japan Semiconductor Energy Laboratory
Xiaoxia Zhang [14] 1418 1247 87.9% 2009—2024 15.1 94 5.5  USA Qualcomm
Gurtej Singh Sandhu [15] 1417 585 41.3% 1991—2024 32.5 44 2.5  USA Micron
Esmael H. Dinan [16] 1358 597 44.0% 2006—2024 17.6 77 3.6  USA Ofinno
Paul Lapstun [17] 1304 246 18.9% 2000—2023 23 57 2.5  Australia Silverbrook Research
Shou-Shan Fan [18] 1296 1084 83.6% 2006—2024 17.8 73 4.2  China Hon Hai
Clarence T. Tegreene [19] 1245 902 72.4% 2000—2024 23.1 54 10.1  USA Intellectual Ventures
Alexander Reznicek [20] 1226 728 59.4% 2006—2024 17.8 69 3.9  USA IBM
Sarbajit K. Rakshit [21] 1207 993 82.3% 2013—2024 11.1 109 3.4  India IBM
Jing Sun [22] 1186 1018 85.8% 2012—2024 11.1 107 5.9  USA Qualcomm
Satoshi Seo [23] 1125 534 47.5% 2002—2024 21.2 53 4.1  Japan Semiconductor Energy Laboratory
Leonard Forbes [24] 1109 411 37.1% 1975—2019 43.3 26 2.6  USA Micron
Edward K. Y. Jung [25] 1109 794 71.6% 1996—2023 27.4 40 8.0  USA Intellectual Ventures
Kijun Kim [26] 1109 783 70.6% 2013—2024 10.2 109 4.6  South Korea LG
Thomas Edison [27] 1084 NA NA 1869—1933 63.9 17 1.0  USA Thomas Edison
Suckchel Yang [28] 1066 686 64.4% 2013—2024 10.6 101 4.7  South Korea LG
Rick Allen Hamilton II [29] 1061 713 67.2% 1999—2024 24.8 43 4.2  USA IBM
Joonkui Ahn [30] 1051 683 65.0% 2013—2024 10.6 99 4.7  South Korea LG
Marta Karczewicz [31] 1014 839 82.7% 2000—2024 23.1 44 4.0  USA Qualcomm
Donald E. Weder [32] 1000 395 39.5% 1978—2015 37.1 27 1.1  USA Weder Family Trust
George Albert Lyon [33] 993 NA NA 1901—1965 64.5 15 1.0  Canada Lyon George Albert
Shan Liu [34] 993 688 69.3% 2013—2024 10.4 95 3.4  USA Tencent
Michael J. Sullivan [35] 992 534 53.8% 1989—2024 34.5 29 3.8  USA Acushnet Holdings
Jordin T. Kare [36] 987 641 64.9% 1992—2024 31.3 32 9.1  USA Intellectual Ventures
Jason K. Resch [37] 981 497 50.7% 2009—2024 14.5 68 4.2  USA IBM
Jay S. Walker [38] 978 422 43.1% 1998—2024 25.8 38 5.2  USA Walker Digital
Ruilong Xie [39] 977 725 74.2% 2013—2024 11 89 4.2  USA IBM
Juan Montojo [40] 969 786 81.1% 2004—2024 20 48 6.9  USA Qualcomm
Yunjung Yi [41] 960 686 71.5% 2015—2024 8.2 117 3.3  South Korea LG
John F. O'Connor [42] 949 NA NA 1901—1935 33.9 28 NA  USA William H. Miner
Ahmadreza Rofougaran [43] 941 457 48.6% 2002—2024 21.6 44 6.4  USA Broadcom
Jason L. Harris [44] 929 572 61.6% 2011—2024 13.1 71 6.0  USA Ethicon
Melvin De Groote [45] 925 NA NA 1924—1966 41.8 22 NA  USA Petrolite
Tingfang Ji [46] 925 690 74.6% 2006—2024 17.5 53 6.9  USA Qualcomm
David R. Hall [47] 905 750 82.9% 1985—2024 38.5 24 3.8  USA Hall Labs
Nathan Myhrvold [48] 904 612 67.7% 1994—2023 29.1 31 11.1  USA Intellectual Ventures
Takahiro Nishi [49] 900 330 36.7% 2001—2024 22.5 40 6.3  Japan Panasonic
William H. Eby [50] 898 894 99.6% 1994—2024 29.7 30 1.2  USA Monsanto
Francis H. Richards [51] 894 NA NA 1899—1930 30.8 29 NA  USA Francis H. Richards
Mark Malamud [52] 885 690 78.0% 1997—2023 25.9 34 7.5  USA Intellectual Ventures
Robert W. Lord [53] 865 681 78.7% 2003—2023 19.4 45 7.6  USA Intellectual Ventures
Hajime Kimura [54] 859 279 32.5% 2002—2024 21.2 41 2.6  Japan Semiconductor Energy Laboratory
Royce A. Levien [55] 854 666 78.0% 1997—2023 25.9 33 6.8  USA Intellectual Ventures
Muriel Y. Ishikawa [56] 838 560 66.8% 2002—2023 21.2 40 11.1  USA Intellectual Ventures
Hongyuan Zhang [57] 837 464 55.4% 2009—2024 14.8 57 3.9  USA Marvell
Michael K. Gschwind [58] 834 442 53.0% 2001—2023 22 38 2.6  USA IBM
Seungmin Lee [59] 831 610 73.4% 2014—2024 9.3 89 3.5  South Korea LG
Clifford A. Pickover [60] 829 546 65.9% 1992—2024 31.8 26 3.9  USA IBM
Lee D. Whetsel [61] 827 129 15.6% 1991—2024 32.9 25 1.1  USA Texas Instruments
Chih-Chao Yang [62] 823 509 61.8% 2003—2024 20.1 41 3.4  USA IBM
Devendra K. Sadana [63] 803 453 56.4% 1983—2024 41 20 4.3  USA IBM
Salman Akram [64] 782 290 37.1% 1995—2024 28.6 27 2.9  USA Micron
SungDuck Chun [65] 780 473 60.6% 2007—2024 16.2 48 3.8  South Korea LG
Warren M. Farnworth [66] 774 289 37.3% 1990—2020 24.4 32 2.8  USA Micron
Bruce B. Doris [67] 763 433 56.7% 1995—2023 28.7 27 4.2  USA IBM
Jeyhan Karaoguz [68] 757 372 49.1% 1996—2024 27.5 28 4.6  USA Broadcom
Carleton Ellis [69] 753 NA NA 1902—1946 43.1 17 NA  USA Ellis Foster Co
Ali Khakifirooz [70] 749 405 54.1% 2011—2023 12 62 4.2  USA IBM
Hsien-Wei Chen [71] 741 376 50.7% 2005—2024 19 39 3.5  Taiwan TSMC
John M. Santosuosso [72] 737 466 63.2% 2001—2023 21.4 34 3.9  USA IBM
Hideo Ando [73] 733 123 16.8% 1983—2020 36.7 20 3.1  Japan Toshiba
Xue Dong [74] 724 711 98.2% 2010—2024 13.1 55 7.4  China BOE
George Spector [75] 723 723 100% 1974—1998 24.6 29 2.1  USA George Spector
Youngdae Lee [76] 723 568 78.6% 2014—2024 9.9 73 3.1  South Korea LG
Justin T. Mason [77] 721 717 99.4% 2008—2024 15.2 47 1.0  USA MS Technologies
Austin L. Gurney [78] 718 182 25.3% 1999—2022 21.6 33 2.9  USA Genentech
Stuart C. Salter [79] 716 671 93.7% 2009—2024 14.2 50 4.8  USA Ford
Jean-Philippe M. Vasseur [80] 705 571 81.0% 2006—2024 17.8 40 2.6  France Cisco Systems
Gregory J. Boss [81] 704 482 68.5% 2008—2024 16 44 4.2  USA IBM
Shougo Sato [82] 702 278 39.6% 1992—2024 31.3 22 1.8  Japan Brother
Lisa Seacat DeLuca [83] 701 508 72.5% 2009—2024 15 47 2.7  USA IBM
Tetsujiro Kondo [84] 700 528 75.4% 1987—2021 34 21 3.8  Japan Sony
Elihu Thomson [85] 696 NA NA 1899—1935 35.9 19 NA  USA GE
Frederick A. Ware [86] 683 224 32.8% 1981—2024 42.2 16 2.8  USA Rambus
Irwin Gerszberg [87] 680 312 45.9% 1994—2023 29.2 23 6.8  USA AT&T
Eric C. Leuthardt [88] 674 457 67.8% 2006—2023 16.7 40 9.1  USA Intellectual Ventures
Satoshi Nagata [89] 668 635 95.1% 2011—2024 12.3 54 4.0  Japan NTT
Chung-Shi Liu [90] 665 375 56.4% 2000—2024 24.1 28 6.1  Taiwan TSMC
Paul S. Henry [91] 656 301 45.9% 1978—2023 44.9 15 6.3  USA AT&T
William I. Wood [92] 653 259 39.7% 1981—2013 32.2 20 5.2  USA Genentech
Simon R. Walmsley [93] 651 171 26.3% 1995—2012 17.2 38 3.2  Australia Silverbrook Research
Jae Hoon Chung [94] 650 381 58.6% 2010—2023 13 50 4.5  South Korea LG
Yan Zhou [95] 650 582 89.5% 2012—2024 11.4 57 4.4  USA Qualcomm
Xiaochuan Chen [96] 637 625 98.1% 2014—2024 9.6 66 7.0  China BOE
Hui-Ling Lou [97] 637 345 54.2% 1997—2024 26.5 24 3.9  USA Marvell
Edward J. Nowak [98] 635 410 64.6% 1979—2021 41.1 15 3.0  USA IBM
Woosuk Ko [99] 633 239 37.8% 2015—2024 8.8 72 3.4  South Korea LG
Audrey D. Goddard [100] 630 154 24.4% 1997—2023 26.2 24 5.3  USA Genentech

This table is usually updated every Tuesday, and is current as of February 20, 2024.

The columns are defined as follows:

  • Inventor: The name of the inventor.
  • Pats: The number of utility patents that have been issued. Only utility patents (or the international equivalent) are listed, as a utility patent is a patent for an invention. Not all patents are for inventions. Other patent types include: design patents for the ornamental design of an object; plant patents for plant varieties; and reissue patents, where a correction is made to an already granted patent. This list does not include patent applications (patents pending) as there is no guarantee that a patent application actually describes a novel invention until the patent is granted.
  • Fams: The number of patent families, which in USPTO data includes an original or continuation-in-part patent by itself or with one or more continuation or divisional patents based on the original or continuation-in-part patent. This is different than global patent families that represent a patent filed in more than one jurisdiction. "NA" signifies the inventor was active prior to digital records.
  • Fam %: The percentage of original and continuation-in-part patents that are in the inventor's patent portfolio [Fams column divided by Pats column, rounded to first decimal as a percentage]. "NA" signifies the inventor was active prior to digital records.
  • Pat Yrs: The first and last year in which an inventor received a patent issuance.
  • Yrs: The number of years from first issuance to most recent issuance, rounded to first decimal based on dates.
  • Pats /Yr: The average number of patents received per year [Pats column divided by Yrs column, rounded].
  • Inv / Pat: The average number of inventors listed on the inventor's most recent 50 patents as of September 7, 2021 or on the date the inventor was added to the table if later. "NA" signifies the inventor was active prior to digital records.
  • Pat Residence: The country of inventor's residence listed in their most recent patent issuance.
  • Majority Assignment: The entity that has the most patents assigned from an inventor's portfolio. This is current and not original assignment. It is usually, but not always an indication of which company the inventor worked at for the majority of their patent activity.

Significance of inventions[edit]

This table is a sortable list of the most prolific inventors as measured by utility patents granted. It does not include other types of invention, such as inventions that were never applied for nor granted, for which there is no known source. Nor does the table attempt to measure the significance of an inventor and their inventions. The significance of inventions is often not apparent until many decades after the invention has been made. For recent inventors, it is not yet possible to determine their place in history.

Various published lists[edit]

Rankings of prolific inventors have been published at various times. However, until the patent records were digitized, these lists were very tedious to prepare, as many thousands of patent records had to be checked manually. Even after digitization, it is still not a simple process. While the USPTO keeps statistics for annual rankings of inventions assigned to companies, it no longer publishes rankings of individual inventors. The last such list was published by the USPTO in 1998.[Info 1] Also, patents predating 1976 have not yet been digitized in the USPTO records. This means that patents before 1976 will not be included in a USPTO search by inventor name, and the number of patents granted before 1976 must be added to current searches.

A more extensive list of prolific inventors with additional information and ability to filter on country, gender, time period, patent type, and Nobel laureate title can be found at idiyas.com/top/inventors. There are some discrepancies with this article due to different inventor queries that attempt to account for data issues such as typos and multiple inventors with the same name.

See also[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "USPTO publication: Prolific Inventors Receiving Utility Patents 1988–1997" (PDF). Archived (PDF) from the original on 2017-05-02. Retrieved 2011-07-12.

References of Inventors' Patents[edit]

  1. ^ Shunpei Yamazaki
  2. ^ Kia Silverbrook
  3. ^ Tao Luo
  4. ^ Kangguo Cheng
  5. ^ Frederick E. Shelton IV
  6. ^ Lowell L. Wood, Jr.
  7. ^ Peter Gaal
  8. ^ Junyi Li
  9. ^ Roderick A. Hyde
  10. ^ Wanshi Chen
  11. ^ Chen-Hua Yu
  12. ^ Hanbyul Seo
  13. ^ Jun Koyama
  14. ^ Xiaoxia Zhang
  15. ^ Gurtej Singh Sandhu
  16. ^ Esmael H. Dinan
  17. ^ Paul Lapstun
  18. ^ Shou-Shan Fan
  19. ^ Clarence T. Tegreene
  20. ^ Alexander Reznicek
  21. ^ Sarbajit K. Rakshit
  22. ^ Jing Sun
  23. ^ Satoshi Seo
  24. ^ Leonard Forbes
  25. ^ Edward K. Y. Jung
  26. ^ Kijun Kim
  27. ^ Thomas Edison
  28. ^ Suckchel Yang
  29. ^ Rick Allen Hamilton II
  30. ^ Joonkui Ahn
  31. ^ Marta Karczewicz
  32. ^ Donald E. Weder
  33. ^ George Albert Lyon
  34. ^ Shan Liu
  35. ^ Michael J. Sullivan
  36. ^ Jordin T. Kare
  37. ^ Jason K. Resch
  38. ^ Jay S. Walker
  39. ^ Ruilong Xie
  40. ^ Juan Montojo
  41. ^ Yunjung Yi
  42. ^ John F. O'Connor
  43. ^ Ahmadreza Rofougaran
  44. ^ Jason L. Harris
  45. ^ Melvin De Groote
  46. ^ Tingfang Ji
  47. ^ David R. Hall
  48. ^ Nathan Myhrvold
  49. ^ Takahiro Nishi
  50. ^ William H. Eby
  51. ^ Francis H. Richards
  52. ^ Mark Malamud
  53. ^ Robert W. Lord
  54. ^ Hajime Kimura
  55. ^ Royce A. Levien
  56. ^ Muriel Y. Ishikawa
  57. ^ Hongyuan Zhang
  58. ^ Michael K. Gschwind
  59. ^ Seungmin Lee
  60. ^ Clifford A. Pickover
  61. ^ Lee D. Whetsel
  62. ^ Chih-Chao Yang
  63. ^ Devendra K. Sadana
  64. ^ Salman Akram
  65. ^ SungDuck Chun
  66. ^ Warren M. Farnworth
  67. ^ Bruce B. Doris
  68. ^ Jeyhan Karaoguz
  69. ^ Carleton Ellis
  70. ^ Ali Khakifirooz
  71. ^ Hsien-Wei Chen
  72. ^ John M. Santosuosso
  73. ^ Hideo Ando
  74. ^ Xue Dong
  75. ^ George Spector
  76. ^ Youngdae Lee
  77. ^ Justin T. Mason
  78. ^ Austin L. Gurney
  79. ^ Stuart C. Salter
  80. ^ Jean-Philippe M. Vasseur
  81. ^ Gregory J. Boss
  82. ^ Shougo Sato
  83. ^ Lisa Seacat DeLuca
  84. ^ Tetsujiro Kondo
  85. ^ Elihu Thomson
  86. ^ Frederick A. Ware
  87. ^ Irwin Gerszberg
  88. ^ Eric C. Leuthardt
  89. ^ Satoshi Nagata
  90. ^ Chung-Shi Liu
  91. ^ Paul S. Henry
  92. ^ William I. Wood
  93. ^ Simon R. Walmsley
  94. ^ Jae Hoon Chung
  95. ^ Yan Zhou
  96. ^ Xiaochuan Chen
  97. ^ Hui-Ling Lou
  98. ^ Edward J. Nowak
  99. ^ Woosuk Ko
  100. ^ Audrey D. Goddard