With the ongoing global pandemic, many of us have not been able to see the family we are used to celebrating with during the holidays. While technology has helped connect us in ways not possible in the past, this festive season has reminded me that humans, myself included, are social creatures. The value of social interaction is found not only in celebratory settings, but also in business, particularly while working with others to develop innovative technology.
Fusion power, an energy source in development for decades, is the combination of two nuclei to form a nucleus while releasing an incredible amount of energy. Fusion reactors capable of harnessing this energy are in development around the world. Recently the UK Atomic Energy Association (UKAEA) signed two multimillion agreements to aid in the development of safe, efficient, and low-carbon fusion energy. The agreements involve 12 different companies which are supported by more than 25 collaborators from industry, research, and technical organisations. Collaboration clearly forms a vital part of developing technology to deliver fusion energy in the UK.
IP solicitors and attorneys alike will tell you that while collaboration may benefit technology development, numerous contractual pitfalls exist. A well-thought-out agreement between parties that clearly documents the IP each party brings to the table (background IP), who owns IP developed during the term of the agreement (foreground IP), and other terms and conditions may prevent such pitfalls. Carefully considering these matters will ensure a successful, pardon the pun, "fusion" between collaborators.
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