[time-nuts] WWVB for Time Nuts
jimlux at earthlink.net
Sat Aug 9 18:31:33 EDT 2014
On 8/9/14, 10:49 AM, Brooke Clarke wrote:
> I've been reading papers by Yingsi Liang who works for Xtendwave and she
> seems to be the key person developing the new clocks.
> I've starting collecting info on my web page:
> I don't understand how Xtendwave can get patents when their work was
> partially funded by NIST?
Very simply.. Dr. Liang works for Southern Methodist University..
Under the Bayh-Dole Act, an educational institution retains the rights
to federally funded research at that institution. The government gets a
"fully paid, royalty free, non-exclusive" license to use the innovation
for government purposes. All others can license it from the institution.
The act was designed to encourage bioengineering/genetic
engineering/human genome research, among other things.
Working at JPL (which is "operated for NASA by the California Institute
of Technology") we're very aware of this. You come up with something
new, you file a "new technology report" (NTR) (this has been standard
government contracting practice since the 70s, preceding Bayh-Dole);
Someone reviews it at the institution and decides whether they want to
patent it; it then goes to the gov't agency and they make a patent
determination (yes, the gov't holds patents, lots of them in
communications and nuclear fields); and finally, if both say "nope",
then you, as the innovator can ask if you can patent it.
Most of the time, they decide not to patent it.. at least at Cal Tech,
with stuff we do at JPL, it seems that we're not making the next
facebook, and they don't seem particularly money hungry. If they have
something licenseable, they'll give you a non-commercial experimentation
license for free. Mostly, it's so they can track it, and report to
Congress every year (a legal requirement of Bayh Dole) on how well
Congress invested taxpayer research funds. NASA can go to Congress and
say "We have 3,231,310 licensees for NASA innovations ranging from
aerogel to zero-g zymurgy, give us more R&D money"
If you want to actually sell something or do something commercial, they
do charge a license, but it's pretty small (low single digit
percentages, as far as I know). I know someone who receives 1/216th (I
think that's the number.. it's close, anyway) of the royalties on some
GPS patent, which works out to <$100/year, in a good year. The usual
split on royalties is half to CalTech, half to the inventors, and if
you're faculty at CalTech, and you give your half back, then they give
you twice that as increased budget.
A similar process occurs for software.. file NTR, rights determination,
then, generally, public release. Software is substantially more complex
because someone has to go through all the licensing agreements of what
you used (often a hodgepodge of GPL v2/v3, Apache, BSD, and who knows
what all) and figure out what the licensing status is. We're *trying*
to do open source on everything, but we don't have a big budget for
lawyers, so it tends to be "when someone asks for it".
There is ONE person at JPL who deals with this as part of their job, and
he deals with the products of about 5500 people, plus anything developed
by subcontractors. The entire Intellectual Property group is less than
half a dozen people.Very much a case of the law grinding slow and
A complication on stuff that JPL does is export controls. If it
"touches" a spacecraft, the default is "export controlled", unless
someone really wants it otherwise.
> There are different modes that have different frame times, the Long mode
> takes 17 minutes for each of: Time, DST/LY state & Date. That's to say
> it takes 51 minutes to get all three. Since the modulation format is in
> complete words their receiver has a problem with the inaccuracy of
> common watch crystals. This says that for those who have a stable LO
> it's much easier to receive the BPSK signal over the times needed
> (probably for all formats).
> PS a new paper "Receiver Design of Radio-Controlled Clocks Based On The
> New WWVB Broadcast Format" came out a few days ago.
> PPS I've been having fun with theodolites and have made a table
> "Accuracy of Visual Fixes" on my Navigation page with columns headed
> Time, Angle & Distance based on the Earth rotation at:
> The idea is that a theodolite with some angular accuracy needs to be
> used with a clock that has a equivalent accuracy to get a position fix
> within some distance.
> [OT] PPPS I'm also having fun looking at the pond water in my back yard.
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