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Thapelo Mmotong

About me

Thapelo is an admitted attorney as well as a registered patent attorney in the Johannesburg office of Adams & Adams. He has a BSc Eng. (Metallurgy & Materials Engineering) degree from the University of the Witwatersrand, and an LLB from UNISA.

Thapelo routinely drafts, files and prosecutes local and international patent applications relating to computer-implemented, mechanical, electro-mechanical, chemical, materials science and metallurgical inventions.

Technical fields in which Thapelo has drafted and prosecuted patent applications include, among others, those of electrochemical cells, supercapacitors, nuclear energy, mining technology (including mining props, valves and pumps), minerals processing, nanomaterials, computer implemented inventions including advanced systems such as block chain, fingerprint processing and verification systems, etc.

Thapelo also handles novelty and infringement searches, provides validity and freedom to operate opinions, and advises clients in all aspects of patent and design law. Thapelo has experience in a wide range of technical fields, including metallurgical engineering, material science, and chemistry.

Prior to joining Adams & Adams, Thapelo worked in an Engineering Design firm where he was involved in designing coal, chrome, and gold metallurgical plants. Thapelo has worked in a railway company where he was involved in developing techniques for welding of ferrous and non-ferrous metals, metallurgical analysis of train components, and failure investigations of derailed trains and failed trained components. Thapelo also spent some time in a synthetic diamonds research institution where he was involved in using mechanical alloying techniques to devise synthetic diamond-based cutters.

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  • Drafting, Filing & Prosecution
  • Enforcement


  • Drafting, Filing & Prosecution
  • Enforcement

Academic Record

  • LLB – University of South Africa | 2017
  • BSc Engineering (Metallurgy & Materials) – University of the Witwatersrand | 2011


  • Registered Patent Attorney | 2018
  • Admitted Attorney of the High Court of South Africa | 2017
  • Qualified Patent Practitioner | 2017


  • Golden Key International Honour Society – Member
  • Legal Practice Council (LPC) – Member
  • Licencing Executives Society (LES) – Member
  • South African Institute of Intellectual Property Law (SAIIPL) – Fellow
  • Southern African Research & Innovation Management Association (SARIMA) – Member


  • MIP – Rising IP Star: Patents | 2021

Thapelo Mmotong News & Podcasts

Fashion never goes out of style – then why not protect it?

Fashion trends come and go, but for designers who take their creative work seriously, protecting the...


South Africa, just like many other countries, has a set of legal provisions pertaining to subject ma...

The Machines Are Here - 3D Printing – A genuine challenge to Intellectual Property laws and rights holders?

Although 3D printing technology has been in existence for several decades, its recent proliferation ...

Patent Protection in Information and Communications Technology

Innovations in electronic, mechanical and software technology are a dynamic and increasingly growing...

Providing Patent Services in Chemical, Metallurgical and Process Technologies

South Africa has a very active, and deeply rooted, chemical, metallurgical and process engineering i...

EPO decides on AI inventorship

The European Patent Office (EPO) has finally been given, and has taken, an opportunity to pin its co...

These ingenious African inventors are tackling the world's worst water weed

Hya Matla Organics has found a way to deal with a plant that is choking Africa’s waterways, and Ad...

More than meets the (GU)I! - IP Protection for Apps

The demand for software applications, particularly mobile apps has grown at a phenomenal rate in rec...