Since its inception, the nanotechnology working group at the European Patent Office has been constantly updating the
content of its different nanotechnology classification tags which it applies to patent publications worldwide. The main
technologies in the nanophotonics area are photonic crystals, surface plasmon devices, semiconductor superlattices and
scanning near-field microscopy. Some patent statistics are shown and a brief summary of legal issues is given.
The European Patent Office has created a nanotechnology initiative in order to continue to ensure the granting of high-quality patents while coping with the increasing workload and with the multidisciplinarity of the inventions in this area of technology. The classification work in the field of nanotechnology is outlined with special emphasis on the sub-discipline of nanophotonics.
Recent developments of stability control in mines, essentially based on Ge-doped Fibre Bragg Gratings
(FBG) are reported including results about the different aspects of the system : accurate characterisations of FBG,
sensor network topology and multiplexing method, user interface design and sensor packaging.