Research and innovation in industrial automation in the medical sector has declined in the last year.

The most recent figures show that the number of industrial automation related patent applications in the industry stood at 675 in the three months ending June – down from 861 over the same period in 2021.

Figures for patent grants related to industrial automation followed a similar pattern to filings – shrinking from 567 in the three months ending June 2021 to 503 in the same period in 2022.

The figures are compiled by GlobalData, who track patent filings and grants from official offices around the world. Using textual analysis, as well as official patent classifications, these patents are grouped into key thematic areas, and linked to key companies across various industries.

Industrial automation is one of the key areas tracked by GlobalData. It has been identified as being a key disruptive force facing companies in the coming years, and is one of the areas that companies investing resources in now are expected to reap rewards from.

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By GlobalData

The figures also provide an insight into the largest innovators in the sector.

Danaher Corp was the top industrial automation innovator in the medical sector in the latest quarter. The company, which has its headquarters in the United States, filed 75 industrial automation related patents in the three months ending June. That was up from 67 over the same period in 2021.

It was followed by the Switzerland based F. Hoffmann-La Roche Ltd with 65 industrial automation patent applications, the United States based Thermo Fisher Scientific Inc (57 applications), and Japan based Shimadzu Corp (53 applications).

ResMed Inc has recently ramped up R&D in industrial automation. It saw growth of 84.2% in related patent applications in the three months ending June compared to the same period in 2021 - the highest percentage growth out of all companies tracked with more than 10 quarterly patents in the medical sector.