Merck bags US patent on blockchain and AI

Merck KGaA has been granted a US patent on a combination of artificial intelligence and blockchain that it says can “protect integrity of supply chains and avoid counterfeit.”

The patent (No. 10,193,695 ) relates to the formation of ‘crypto-objects’, which Merck says link physical objects to a blockchain through the use of unique identifiers or ‘fingerprints‘. The German company is a player in the security materials sector with its Functional Solutions division, which include laser markings, invisible security materials and detection methods.

According to Merck, any unique feature can be used as a fingerprint, such as a chemical signature, DNA, or image patterns. The technology means established identification processes – such as barcode scanners or mass spectrometry - can be combined with blockchain and machine-learning to provide an “integrated security approach”.

The concept sounds somewhat similar to other platforms such as IBM’s ‘crypto-anchor’, which also combines AI with blockchain to give objects a unique identity to allow it to be tracked securely through the supply chain.

“This new patent continues to build on momentum gained through earlier patents,” said Isabel De Paoli, chief strategy officer at Merck (pictured). “This will have implications for all industries that depend on reliable product authenticity, such as safety-critical supply chains in the pharma and food sector.”

The company says that machine-to-machine readability has been the standard approach to connecting objects to digital supply chain workflows, but the new patented concept “makes machine-to-object readability possible by linking AI and blockchain technology.”

Merck’s earlier patents in this area are Nos. 10,002,362 and 10,002,277, which cover the integration of physical materials into the digital world, the protection of the corresponding hardware and the enhancement of existing security functions.

Related articles:

     Want our news sent directly to your inbox?

Yes please 2


Home  |  About us  |  Contact us  |  Advertise  |  Links  |  Partners  |  Privacy Policy  |   |  RSS feed   |  back to top