oil companies snatching up alternative energy patents?

Are there any cites or pieces of proof that anyone can provide on an example of some sort of alternative energy patent that someone filed, but that the oil company essentially bought off of the person, and the oil company is holding onto until it ‘suits them’?

I’m not looking for ‘its documented out there, and if you dont believe it, go look it up. I’d do it myself but I’m too lazy’ answers (I actually did see that response on a message board, and the credibility of his post immediately hit 0% with me). I have to admit though that I did look but didn’t come up with anything, other then just people saying it happens. Sounded very urban legendish (like the 100 mpg carburator) to me.

Hiding it wouldn’t make much sense, especially if it was a promising idea. The life of a patent isn’t that long and if it is worthwhile the best thing to do while the patent is in force is to reap the rewards by exploiting it and getting out in front of the competition.

You can find all kinds of anecdotal stories of deaths, kidnappings, mysterious disappearances, etc of persons with secret devices to achieve free energy, energy from the vacuum, and other technically non-feasible processes.
A case in point is: ** The Neal Tank **

I’m going to sidestep the UL part of this to say there are legitimate reasons for an energy company to put out feelers into alternative energy technology. In addition to oil, many energy companies have holdings in coal, pipelines, and even nuclear. They don’t want to be caught flat-footed if there’s a market shift. It wouldn’t surprise me to find that Exxon-Mobil already has a wind power subsidiary.

As the price of oil goes up, some expensive alternatives start to look feasible.

BP and alternative energy.

If there was a truly amazing alternative energy source, wouldn’t the evil mega-corp that stole the patent be making gajillions of dollars a day profit by selling cucumber based fuel while the others are stuck with boring old oil? Unless all the oil companies in the world are engaged in a huge conpiracy, of course :dubious: