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Sam Mickan | Senior Associate

B.A., B.Eng (Electrical) (Hons.), M.IP Law, Ph.D., Patent Attorney

Sam Mickan

Areas of Expertise

  • Patents
  • Electrical & Electronic Engineering
  • Information Technology & Software
  • Medical Devices
  • Nanotechnology
  • Physics

Sam's practice includes the preparation, prosecution and opposition of patent applications in the fields of lasers and photonics, electrical/electronic engineering, signal and data processing, software/information and communications technology (ICT), mechanical devices and biomedical sensing.

Sam has led research teams in Australia and the US, and has completed a Ph.D. in terahertz technology. Sam was a senior lecturer in the School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering at the University of Adelaide, where he still holds an adjunct appointment, and is an inventor on two US patents. He is the current author of a chapter on the processes for obtaining and maintaining a patent in Thomson Reuters' "The Laws of Australia".

Sam has experience in patents relating to computer-implemented and Web-based inventions for both local and international software companies, communications technology, signal processing, electronics, physical systems (including nanotechnology and photonics), electrical machines, mechanical devices, and biomedical devices.

Sam's research in terahertz technology included working on biomolecular diagnostic targets, writing signal and image processing programs, and building ultrafast laser systems, including optical and electronic components. His research was conducted at the University of Adelaide and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. He has received a number of Australian Research Council Discovery grants for his research.

Sam received a University Medal from the University of Adelaide for his Ph.D., a Tall Poppy Award from the Australian Institute of Political Science, and a Fulbright Scholarship from the Australian-American Fulbright Commission to study in Troy, New York.

Affiliations and Memberships

  • Member: Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers
  • Member: Intellectual Property Society of Australia and New Zealand
  • Member: The Institute of Patent and Trade Mark Attorneys of Australia


  • Bachelor of Arts (German and History), The University of Adelaide
  • Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical and Electronic)(Hons.), University of Adelaide
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Photonics), University of Adelaide
  • Master of Intellectual Property Law, University of Melbourne
  • Registered Patent and Trade Marks Attorney (Australia and New Zealand)
  • University Medal, University of Adelaide

Sam’s latest articles

US software patents - Supreme Court will decide

The US Supreme Court has agreed to hear a new case on software patents: Alice Corporation Pty. Ltd. v. CLS Bank… more »

Patent Office introduces new ground of opposition: software patent found invalid for lack of manner of manufacture

In the second of our two reports on software patent decisions, the Australian Patent Office (APO) has intervened in a patent… more »

Australian Patent Office rules that insurance plan is not patentable

The Australian Patent Office has decided that an invention relating to a life insurance plan, which included insurance… more »

Articles about Sam

Davies Collison Cave 2014 staff appointments

The partners of Davies Collison Cave are pleased to announce the following appointments effective 1 July 2014. Sam Mickan… more »

DCC ready for the ANZ Innovyz START and Innovyz BRIDGE Demo Day

As the ANZ Innovyz START accelerator program draws to a close for summer 2014 the graduates of the ANZ Innovyz START and ANZ… more »

DCC Out and About

Davies Collison Cave is proud to be a partner in the ANZ Innovyz START accelerator program in 2014. ANZ Innovyz START is a… more »