Philadelphia associate Larry S. Zelson was recently granted U.S. Patent No. 7,287,545 for a sanitary check valve. Larry performed all of the patent prosecution himself, and he is now working to sell or license the patent. He says that going through the patent process as an inventor, and not solely as a patent attorney, was a valuable experience and gave him personal insight into how his clients may view the process.
While practicing as an engineer, Larry designed piping systems for pharmaceutical and food processing plants that require sterility. The patented valve is designed specifically for such applications and is used to permit flow in only one direction in a pipe.