Publication Number Format in Japanese Patent

In Japan a publication document of patent(patent gazette) is usually issued after a lapse of one year and six months from the date of the filing date, except for some exceptions.
There are several kinds of formats of Japanese publication number in Japan.


Publication Number Format

(1) 1971~1989 (Western calendar year)

特開昭●●-******  or  S●●-******

●●   : 2digits (46~64)
****** : 1~6digits


(2) 1989~1999 (Western calendar year)

特開平●●-****** or H●●-******

●●   : 2digits (01~11)
****** : 1~6digits



(3) 2000~ (Western calendar year)


●●●●   : 4digits (2000~)
****** : 1~6digits



Meaning of year format(S,H) described above

Year of Publication number was based on the Japanese calendar until 1999, and from 2000 it has been based on the Western calendar.
The Japanese calendar is based on Era name, and Era name is related to the the emperor who was in rule.

“昭”or”S” means Showa era. In Showa era, Emperor Showa (Emperor Hirohito) was in rule.
Therefore, between 1971 and 1989, “昭”or”S” is used for patent number.

“平”or”H” means Heisei era. In Heisei era, Emperor Heisei (Emperor Akihito) has been in rule.
Therefore, between 1989 and 2000, “平”or”H” is used for patent number.



How to search Publication document using J-PlatPat

When you search for a publication document from a publication number, it is possible to use either the Japanese calendar or the Western calendar.
For example, if you want to search a document that was issued in 2000, you may input 2000 or H12.


You can check the same gazette by entering either number.



reference:How to search Japanese patent by patent number