Ex parte EDWARD F. ALLINA - Page 7

          Appeal No. 97-1002                                                          
          Application 08/014,379                                                      

          discharge arrangement.  There is agreement that Melanson teaches            
          the use of a disk-shaped varistor wafer in series with a gap                
          electrode.  Thus, neither of these references teaches a transient           
          voltage surge suppression circuit using only varistors as                   
          claimed.  Although the examiner argues that it would have been              
          obvious to eliminate the spark gap from the references, there is            
          no suggestion for this modification in either Zisa or Melanson.             
          If Zisa and Melanson could have achieved the same function                  
          without the spark gap, they were apparently not aware of it.  Any           
          suggestion to use only varistors with no other components for               
          clipping transient voltage surges and shunting surge currents to            
          ground comes from appellant’s own disclosure and not from the               
          teachings of the applied prior art.  Thus, this particular                  
          feature of independent claims 1 and 14 is not taught or suggested           
          by the applied references.  This finding alone is sufficient for            
          us not to sustain this particular rejection of claims 4, 5 and              
          Notwithstanding our decision to reverse this rejection of                   
          claims 4, 5 and 14-17 based on the first point argued above, we             
          consider the second point as well in order to provide guidance to           
          appellant and the examiner.  It is sufficient to say that the               
          patents to Zisa and Melanson do not support the teachings                   


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