Formatting a Publication Number

This Help topic is a guide to the different publication number formats for the Major Full Text Collections within XLPAT. Publication numbers typically consists of up to three elements. Different formats from different authorities will use anywhere between one and all of these:

  1. Sometimes there is a Classification Code at the beginning of the publication number mentioned in example column. Classification codes define the type of document. These codes usually consist of one- or two-digit numbers, but they can sometimes be letters and/or additional letters added to the end of the document authority code.
  2. If there is a Year and Century forming part of the number, it is usually two or four digits. These digits appear, either at the start of the number, or following a classification code (should there be one).
  3. The Serial number, which may vary in length between and within authorities. This number is usually at the end, and can often be the sole element used.

Therefore, if you are searching for a publication number standardized by a different source, the easiest way to find the correct format is often by referencing a known document of the same kind and similar time period. In other words, look at a similar document's publication number for the existence and format of the above three elements, then convert accordingly. Where the “serial number” varies in length between documents, some sources may try to keep the length consistent by adding leading zeroes. Therefore inserting leading wildcards, or replacing existing zeroes with wildcards, within this section of the number may also help find the correct document. You may also try substituting alternative date formats or adding wildcards to allow for classification codes when you are unsure of how a particular authority publishes their numbers.

Select a patent authority to view XLPAT® publication number formatting requirements:

CA - Canada

Dates Auth. Code Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 CA N/A Fixed: 7 digits A1, C, A, B, F
  • CA2779658A1
  • CA1305731C
  • CA1010935A
  • CA1216603B
  • CA2902498F
CA N/A Fixed: 6 digits A, B, S
  • CA556057A
  • CA939551B
  • CA176964S
CA N/A Fixed: 5 digits S
  • CA76532S
From 01-01-2000 CA N/A Fixed: 7 digits A1, C, E, F
  • CA2779658A1
  • CA1305731C
  • CA1277180E
  • CA2902498F
CA N/A Fixed: 6 digits S
  • CA176964S
CA N/A Fixed: 5 digits S
  • CA76532S

 

CN - China

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 CN N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, B, C, C8, U, Y, S, K1, K2, K3, K4, K5, K6
  • CN1487838A
  • CN1520004B
  • CN1074075C
  • CN1198186U
  • CN2356018Y
  • CN1491960K1
  • CN3623711S
CN N/A Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 6 digits A, B, U, K1, K2, K4
  • --
From 01-01-2000 CN N/A N/A Fixed: 9 digits A, C9, C8, Y
  • CN109309324A
  • CN100548803C8
  • CN100502023C9
  • CN201436204Y
CN N/A N/A Fixed: 8 digits A8, A9, B, B8, B9, U, U8, U9, S2, S3, S4, S5, S6, S7, S8, K1, K2, K3, K4
  • CN(1)06061339A8
  • CN(1)03355657A9
  • CN(2)06865665U
  • CN(1)05820349B
  • CN(1)05256729B8
  • CN(1)04185869B9
  • CN(2)08315732U
  • CN(2)08115820U8
  • CN(2)08085212U9
  • CN(1)02811130K1
  • CN(1)02030338K2
  • CN(1)00534171K3
  • CN(2)03707109K4
  • CN(2)01364160K5
CN N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, C, C8, C9, Y, S, K1, K2, K3, K4, K5, K6
  • CN1487838A
  • CN1074075C
  • CN2356018Y
  • CN1491960K1
  • CN3623711S

 

EP - European Patent Office

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 EP N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A1, A2, A3, A4, A8, A9, B1, B2, B8, B9
  • EP3437870A1
  • EP2987926B1
From 01-01-2000 EP N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A1, A2, A3, A4, A8, A9, B1, B2, B8, B9, B3
  • EP3437870A1
  • EP2987926B1

 

FR - France

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 FR N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, B1, B2, B3, B4, T
  • FR1461790A
  • FR3030911A1
  • FR2936226B1
  • FR1409033T
FR N/A N/A Fixed: 6 digits A
  • FR825717A
FR N/A N/A Fixed: 5 digits E
  • FR88083E
FR N/A Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR I1, I2) Fixed: 4 digits M, E
  • FR4370M
  • FR1812E
FR N/A N/A Fixed: 3 digits F, M
  • FR108F
  • FR978M
FR N/A N/A Fixed: 2 digits F
  • FR92F
From 01-01-2000 FR N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, A1, A2, A3, A4, A5, A6, A7, A8, B1, B2, B3, B4, T
  • FR1461790A
  • FR3030911A1
  • FR2936226B1
  • FR1409033T
FR N/A N/A Fixed: 6 digits A
  • FR825717A

 

GB - Great Britain

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 GB N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, B, A8, A9, B8, C, C2, C3, S
  • GB2509886A
  • GB2487316B
  • GB2467653A8
  • GB2476666A9
  • GB2467653B8
  • GB2446738C
  • GB2380918C2
  • GB2380918C3
  • GB4029690S
GB Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A) Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 5 digits A, D0
  • --
From 01-01-2000 GB N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, B, A8, A9, B8, C, C2, C3, S
  • GB2509886A
  • GB2487316B
  • GB2467653A8
  • GB2476666A9
  • GB2467653B8
  • GB2446738C
  • GB2380918C2
  • GB2380918C3
  • GB4029690S
GB N/A Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 5 digits D0
  • --

 

JP - Japan

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 JP N/A N/A Fixed: 8 digits B2,B1
  • JP64031141B2
  • JP29068258B1
JP N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits S, B2, B6, B1, U, U6, U7, Y1, Y6, Y2, K2, K4, K5
  • JP1553399S
  • JP6536209B2
  • JP6527517B6
  • JP6536923B1
  • JP3222050U
  • JP3220171U6
  • JP3214195U7
  • JP2607890Y1
  • JP2607899Y2
  • JP5305064K2
  • JP3107295K4
  • JP2567268K5
JP N/A Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR B1, Y1, A, A5, A6, B2, B6, U, U5, U6, Y2, Y6, K1, K2, K4, K5) Fixed: 6 digits C1, Z1, C2, S, B1, Y1, Z2, A, A5, A6, B2, B6, U, U5, U6, Y2, Y6, K1, K2, K4, K5
  • JP179904C1
  • JP340677Z1
  • JP182178C2
  • JP204343S
  • JP(T)1511120B1
  • JP(S)26003182B1
  • JP(H)07121322B1
  • JP(S)41009211Y1
  • JP(S)06125766A
  • JP1997104659A5
  • JP1992315559A6
  • JP(H)0436937B2
  • JP(S)6412154B2
  • JP6541221B2
  • JP3519403B6
  • JP(H)0572970U
  • JP2002539332U5
  • JP(H)0582885U6
  • JP(H)0810653Y2
  • JP2014071796K1
  • JP(H)11352312K1
  • JP(H)0137954K2
  • JP(H)0687896K4
  • JP(H)0613399K5
JP N/A Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR B1, Y1, A, A5, A6, B2, B6, U, U5, U6, Y2, Y6, K1, K2, K4, K5, A1) Fixed: 5 digits C1, Z1, C2, B1, Y1, Z2, A, A5, A6, B2, B6, U, U5, U6, Y2, Y6, K1, K2, K4, K5, A1
  • JP1997104659A5
  • JP1992315559A6
  • JP(H)0436937B2
  • JP(S)6412154B2
  • JP6541221B2
  • JP3519403B6
  • JP(H)0572970U
  • JP2002539332U5
  • JP(H)0582885U6
  • P(H)0810653Y2
  • JP2014071796K1
  • JP(H)11352312K1
  • JP(H)0137954K2
  • JP(H)0687896K4
  • JP(H)0613399K5
JP N/A Fixed: 3 digits I, H
  • JP778H
  • JP320I
From 01-01-2000 JP N/A N/A Fixed: 8 digits B2, B1
  • JP64031141B2
  • JP29068258B1
JP N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits S, B2, B6, B1, U, U6, U7, Y1, Y6, Y2, K2, K4, K5
  • JP1553399S
  • JP6536209B2
  • JP6527517B6
  • JP6536923B1
  • JP3222050U
  • JP3220171U6
  • JP3214195U7
  • JP2607890Y1
  • JP2607899Y2
  • JP5305064K2
  • JP3107295K4
  • JP2567268K5
JP Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A, A5, A6, U, U5, U6, S3, K1, K4, A1) Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A, A5, A6, U, U5, U6, S3, K1, K4, A1) Fixed: 6 digits S, A, A5, A6, U, U5, U6, S3, K1, K4, K6, A1
  • JP179904C1
  • JP340677Z1
  • JP182178C2
  • JP204343S
  • JP(T)1511120B1
  • JP(S)26003182B1
  • JP(H)07121322B1
  • JP(S)41009211Y1
  • JP(S)06125766A
  • JP1997104659A5
  • JP1992315559A6
  • JP(H)0436937B2
  • JP(S)6412154B2
  • JP6541221B2
  • JP3519403B6
  • JP(H)0572970U
  • JP2002539332U5
  • JP(H)0582885U6
  • JP(H)0810653Y2
  • JP2014071796K1
  • JP(H)11352312K1
  • JP(H)0137954K2
  • JP(H)0687896K4
  • JP(H)0613399K5
JP Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A, A5, A6, U, U5, U6, S3, K1, K4) FFixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A, A5, A6, A1, U, U5, U6, S3, K1, K4, A1 ) Fixed: 5 digits C1, Z1, C2, B1, Y1, Z2, A, A5, A6, B2, B6, U, U5, U6, Y2, Y6, K1, K2, K4, K5, A1
  • JP1997104659A5
  • JP1992315559A6
  • JP(H)0436937B2
  • JP(S)6412154B2
  • JP6541221B2
  • JP3519403B6
  • JP(H)0572970U
  • JP2002539332U5
  • JP(H)0582885U6
  • P(H)0810653Y2
  • JP2014071796K1
  • JP(H)11352312K1
  • JP(H)0137954K2
  • JP(H)0687896K4
  • JP(H)0613399K5
JP N/A N/A Fixed: 3 digits
  • JP320I
  • JP778H

US - United States of America

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 US N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, B1, B2, B3
  • US4569344A
  • US9974701B1
US N/A N/A Fixed: 6 digits I5, S, I4
  • US(B)494383I5
  • US(D)423353S
  • US(T)997003I4
US N/A N/A Fixed: 5 digits I5, S, P, E, F1
  • US(RE)29582F1
  • US(PP)11748P
US N/A N/A Fixed: 4 digits H, P, E, F1
  • US(H)1802H
  • US(RE)7002E
US N/A N/A Fixed: 3 digits H
  • US(H)112H
From 01-01-2000 US N/A N/A Fixed: 8 digits B1, B2, B8, B9, C1, C2
  • US10004959B1
US N/A N/A Fixed: 7 digits A, B1, B2, B3
  • US4569344A
  • US9974701B1
US Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A1, A2, A9, P1, P9) Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A1, A2, A9, P1, P9) Fixed: 6 digits S, A1, A2, A9, P1, P9
  • US(D)423353S
  • US2018136598A1
  • US2018084701P1
US N/A N/A Fixed: 5 digits S, P, E, F1, P2, P3
  • US(RE)29582F1
  • US(RE)37001E
  • US(PP)11169P
  • US(PP)11728P2
  • US(PP)12510P3
US N/A N/A Fixed: 4 digits H, P, E, F1
  • US(H)1802H
  • US(RE)7002E
US N/A N/A Fixed: 3 digits H
  • --

 

WO - World Intellectual Property Organization (WIPO) PCT

Dates Auth. Code Century Year Number Format Valid Kind Codes Example
Untill 31-12-1999 WO N/A Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 5 digits A1, A2, A3, A8, A9, B1, B8, B9
  • --
From 01-01-2000 WO Fixed: 2 Digits (ONLY FOR A1, A2, A3, A4, A8, A9, B1, K1) Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 6 digits A1, A2, A3, A4, A8, A9, B1, K1, B8, B9
  • WO2019028309A1
  • WO2008140670B1
  • WO2016006560K1
WO N/A Fixed: 2 Digits Fixed: 5 digits A1, A2, A3, A8, A9, B1, B8, B9, K1
  • --
Click Here to download the Publication Number formats (*.xls)

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