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Siemens researchers and developers worldwide reported 8,800 invention disclosures in fiscal year 2010. That’s 15 percent more than in the previous year and corresponds to 40 inventions each business day. All in all, it’s another demonstration of the innovative power of the more than 30,000 R&D employees who work at Siemens. The total number of patents granted increased from 56,000 in 2009 to 57,900. At an awards ceremony in Munich on November 22, Siemens CEO Peter Löscher honored 12 particularly successful research and development employees as “Inventor of the Year.” These 12 alone account for around 1,300 granted individual patents.
“Siemens owes its pioneering achievements and its leading position throughout the world to extraordinary personalities such as these,” said Löscher. “Our research and development specialists are laying the foundation for sustainable growth far into the future. And we will once again be investing considerable funds into research and development in fiscal year 2011.”
The topics of this year’s inventions at Siemens cover a wide spectrum. They include new methods for coating turbine blades in power plants, LED lamp systems for buildings or railroads, charging technologies for electric cars, and magnetically controlled capsule cameras that can be swallowed like a pill. The latter device significantly reduces the discomfort associated with a gastroscopy. Nearly half of the topics involve technologies that improve energy efficiency and sustainability. The innovations involved therefore belong to the comprehensive Siemens Environmental Portfolio, which generated sales of approximately €28 billion in fiscal year 2010. The Inventors of the Year 2010 come from Germany (Berlin, Duisburg, Erlangen, Munich), the United States and China.
Since 1995, Siemens has been presenting its annual Inventor of the Year award to outstanding researchers and developers whose inventions make a major contribution to the success of the company. “Simply developing new technological solutions is not enough to ensure long-term success,” said Professor Hermann Requardt, Siemens chief technology officer and CEO of the Healthcare Sector. “You also have to know what the customers want and how to optimize the value-added chain so that new solutions can be implemented quickly and cost-effectively. With 1,300 individual patents to their names, this year’s Inventors of the Year are a shining example for our more than 30,000 researchers at Siemens.”
“The knowledge in the heads of the employees represents the key value-added for a company, and innovations are the transformation of this knowledge into successful products," said Dr. Winfried Büttner, who heads the Patent Department at Siemens. “A company’s future strongly depends on its intellectual property. Our patent portfolio is therefore extremely valuable — and our invention disclosures and patents are a key indicator when it comes to determining the efficiency of our investments in research and development.”
Siemens AG (Berlin and Munich) is a global powerhouse in electronics and electrical engineering, operating in the industry, energy and healthcare sectors. For over 160 years, Siemens has stood for technological excellence, innovation, quality, reliability and internationality. The company is the world’s largest provider of environmental technologies, generating some €28 billion – more than one-third of its total revenue – from green products and solutions. In fiscal 2010, which ended on September 30, 2010, revenue totaled €76 billion and net income €4.1 billion. At the end of September 2010, Siemens had around 405,000 employees worldwide.