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Electrical Engineering: Standards & Patents

Get started finding information and resources for Electrical Engineering & Electronics


Get started finding Standards or Patents

What is a standard?

A standard is an agreed and approved code of best practice containing technical specifications and guidelines that can be routinely used to ensure that products and processes are fit for purpose.

ASTM Standards

Access the full text of ASTM Standards on ASTM COMPASS. If you experience problems with off campus access to ASTM Standards, then please use Apps Anywhere.

British Standards and ISO Standards 

Access the full text of all British Standards through BSOL Standards Online. Often an ISO International Standard will have a direct British Standard equivalent so you will be able to find it on the BSOL website.

BSI have introduced additional security for downloading PDFs from the BSOL platform. Users need to install FileOpen on their device. If you are using an MWS device, the FileOpen Plugin for Acrobat is available from Install University Applications. Instructions for downloading File Open from BSI.

If you experience problems with off campus access to BSOL, then please use Apps Anywhere.

IEEE Standards

Access the full text of all IEEE Standards on IEEE Xplore

Standards from other countries

If an international standard (ISO) has a direct British standard equivalent, it will be accessible via British Standards Online. Other standards from other countries are harder to find. Look under the "standards websites" tab above for some useful international links. If you need a non-UK standard, then we may be able to source it from another library, you can request it using Get it for Me

What is a patent?

Governments grant a patent for a novel invention to the inventor for a limited period. The patent gives the inventor the right to stop others from making, using or selling the invention without their permission. When a patent is granted the invention becomes the property of the inventor and they can then sell, rent or hire it out as they wish.

Searching patents

Patents can be hard to search for as the language used to describe them is often deliberately confusing and complicated. To get started with your patent search use Espacenet from the European Patent Office (EPO).