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The U.S. Navy received patents for more inventions last year than two-thirds of the Fortune 500 corporations and government agencies ranked in a report published last month.

The Department of the Navy increased its patent volume by 12 percent over last year, earning 399 patents and climbing up three slots to no. 89 on the IP Record’s Top 300 Organizations Granted U.S. Patents in 2013.

“The Navy has continued to see its patent portfolio strengthen year after year,” said Dr. Walter F. Jones, executive director at the Office of Naval Research (ONR). “The variety of patents granted is striking, but just as compelling are the partnerships we develop with academia, research institutions and industry to support research that addresses critical Navy needs.”

ONR manages the Navy’s intellectual property investments, setting policy and conducting oversight of patents as well as trademarks, copyrights, inventions and royalty payments.

Patents are designed to protect an inventor’s interests, excluding others from “making, using, offering for sale, or selling the invention through the United States or importing the invention” for a specified time.

In terms of patents granted between January and December 2013, the Navy outperformed the likes of Nissan Motor Co. and Rolls-Royce PLC, pharmaceutical purveyors Novartis AG and Sanofi-Aventis, and technology institutions including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. In the public sector, it out-patented both the U.S. Army and Department of Health and Human Services.

Last year, the Navy dominated the government category in IEEE Spectrum magazine’s 2013 Patent Power Scorecard. IEEE evaluated 5,000 organization portfolios across 17 industries for the number of patents issued as well as the growth, impact, originality and general applicability across each.

Published yearly by the Intellectual Property Owners (IPO) Association, the IP Record compiles rankings based on utility patent data from the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office.