26 Sep 2016

T 0141/14 - Correction of error

Key points

  • The Board does not allow the amendment of "vanadium" to "vanadium oxide" under Rule 139. 
  • " Appellant's argument that the system titanium oxide/ vanadium oxide was commonly known as solid acid and as SCR catalyst is accepted by the board. However, as long as there exists at least one further possibility of correction [] the criteria of Rule 139 EPC that "the correction must be obvious in the sense that nothing else would have been intended than what is offered as the correction" is not fulfilled."  The Board deciteds that " a combination of vanadium and sulfate is clearly one of the options envisaged by the application as filed" and is thus the a further possibility rendering the correction under Rule 139  EPC unallowable. 


T 0141/14 - link


Reasons for the Decision
1. Main request - Amendments
1.1 For the board, the amendment of the feature "vanadium" to "vanadium oxide" does not meet the requirements of Rule 139 EPC, because the proposed correction is only one of several options which would occur to the skilled person.
1.1.1 According to the passage bridging pages 2 and 3 of the application as filed, the "solid acid system of titanium oxide and vanadium" is described as optionally further containing "at least one component selected from the group consisting of tungsten oxide (WO3), molybdenum oxide (MoO3), silicon dioxide, sulfate and zeolites", so a combination of vanadium and sulfate is clearly one of the options envisaged by the application as filed.
1.1.2 Appellant's argument that the system titanium oxide/ vanadium oxide was commonly known as solid acid and as SCR catalyst is accepted by the board. However, as long as there exists at least one further possibility of correction - for instance the one indicated in point 1.1.1 above - the criteria of Rule 139 EPC that "the correction must be obvious in the sense that nothing else would have been intended than what is offered as the correction" is not fulfilled.
1.2 Since there is no basis either in the application as filed for the amendment by which "vanadium oxide" replaces "vanadium", the subject-matter of claim 1 at issue extends beyond the content of the application as filed (Article 123(2) EPC).
1.3 It follows from the above considerations that the main request cannot be allowed.

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