Four chemical inventions, two mechanical inventions, and one design were the cause of patents issued to Utah inventors by the United States Patent Office.

Since this column was started in 1989, many inquiries have been received concerning the general nature of patents and how one proceeds to obtain a patent.A handy booklet is available from the Superintendent of Documents, U.S. Government Printing Office, Dept. 3069, Washington, D.C. 20402.

The booklet defines what a patent is, tells what items can be patented, conditions for obtaining a patent, filing and maintenance fees, and answers the most frequently asked questions about patents. The booklet is entitled General Information Concerning Patents, S/N 003-004-00641-2, and costs $2.00.

LeRoy D. Searle, Salt Lake City. A device for lifting objects to the surface of a body of water by buoyancy produced by an air-filled compartment. Assigned to LeRoy Searle, Salt Lake City. Filed Aug. 23, 1989. Patent 4,979,451.

Robert I. Stephen; Tomasz J. Petelenz, and Stephen C. Jacobsen, all of Salt Lake City. Method of iontophoretically treating acne, furuncles and like skin disorders. Assigned to Iomed, Inc., Salt Lake City. Filed May 11, 1989. Patent 4,979,938.

David L. Hill, Salt Lake City, and Kenneth A. Brunk, Elko, Nev. Rapid oxidation process of carbonaceous and pyritic gold-bearing ores by chlorination. Assigned to Newmont Gold Company and Outomec U.S.A., Inc., Englewood, Colo. Filed Feb. 22, 1988. Patent 4,979,986.

Jack L. Woods, Ogden, and J. Mason Kirton, Woods Cross. Method for decorating cylindrical metallic containers. Assigned to Ball Corporation, Westminster, Colo. Filed July 17, 1989. Patent 4,980,008.

Henk L. Meuzelaar, and William H. McClennen, both of U. of U., Salt Lake City. Micro-volume, Curie-point pyrolysis/desorption apparatus. Filed May 24, 1988. Patent 4,980,131.

David H. Jeffs, Salt Lake City. Method of controlling the time of delivery of reagents in a specimen well. Assigned to Multi-Technology Inc., Salt Lake City. Filed Sep. 2, 1988. Patent 4,980,293.

Dixie L. Daniels, Salt Lake City. Fingernail form. Filed Mar. 10, 1989. Design patent 313,286.

Copies of patents are available by number for $1.50 from Box 9, Patent and Trademark Office, Washington D.C. 20231.