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Brazil Embraer’s New Baby Flies on Alcohol

Embraer's ethanol powered Ipanema planeThe Neiva Aeronautical Industry, a subsidiary company of the Brazilian airplane manufacturer Embraer, delivered the first alcohol-powered Ipanema airplane for agriculture use.

The ceremony took place in the city of Botucatu, in the interior of the state of São Paulo, in the Southeast of Brazil, where the company’s headquarters is located.


The aircraft was also the 1000th of the Ipanema model to be delivered, previously available with petrol-powered engines.


According to information from the company, the new aircraft is the first series airplane in the world to fly with an alcohol-powered engine.


According to the company, as well as being three to four times cheaper than aviation petrol, the fuel extracted from sugar cane is also a cleaner energy source and capable of improving the aircraft’s performance.


“The decision to develop an agriculture use airplane powered with alcohol is based on the fact that Brazil is a great producer of this kind of fuel,” said the statement released by Embraer.


Ethanol has been used in large scale in the Brazilian automobile fleet for about 30 years. According to the company, the new engine offers a reduction of 20% in the operational costs.


As well as launching the Ipanema with the new engine, Neiva is doing the conversion of older engines, powered with petrol, to work with alcohol.


According to the company, this is not only possible “as it is fitting”. The company received up to this moment 100 orders for conversion and has started delivering the kits for the transformation.


The Ipanema, used in pulverization of crops, was developed in the end of the 1960s and started selling in the beginning of the 1970s.


Last year, 83 units of the model were sold, against 46 in 2003. According to Embraer, Neiva currently has 80% of the national market for agriculture use airplanes.


Anba

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  • Show Comments (5)

  • Jose Santana

    I like buy alcohal convertion kits for US cars Japannse cars from brazail.

  • Guest

    Alcohol use at Indy
    No, this isn’t about drinking beer at the Indianapolis 500! I just heard, and don’t have any confirmation, that this year there was a commitment at the Indianapolis 500 to use a small percentage of alocohol (added to gasoline) and then next year or the year after 100% alcohol. If this is true, maybe the world is truly moving in the direction of less gasoline/oil consumption. We need to–we are critically endangering our grandchildren’s world by our unwillingness to cut down or eliminate our use of gas and oil.

  • Guest

    Ethanol/Methanol fuel for cars and other
    This has been a done deal for over 100 years. Henry Ford originally intended the Model T to be usable on alcohol – there are many tales of people getting home on a jug of mmonshine. Only the rich could afford to burn Whisky, but that’s only because of the tax on it.

    Carburettor engines can be rejetted to suit alcohol, it takes time to get it dead right, but is easy to make one run, since alcohol is more tolerant of innacurate metering so long as it is a rich mixture. You may well need to alter the distributor advance curve.

    Indy cars, speedway bikes and hillclimb cars used to run on alcohol, but who knows what they burn today.

    Modern computer-driven motors can be remapped if you have the gear to do it.- start with bigtime rich mixture to make it run, then lean back to stoichiometric, or a bit richer. Don’t forget the timing..

    It’s no big deal – but the kicker can be that some of the flexible pipes and seals (floats maybe) could be vulnerable to alcohol. Do a long soak test to check.

    In the UK ‘Cleveland Discol’ petrol was marketed as a premium brand on the groundds that it had a small (5 or 10%?) amount of alcohol in it. then they were bought out…..

    Good luck if you’re trying it.

  • Guest

    congratulations from Japan for the succe
    That is a hope for the alternative fuel.
    Automotive fuel also shoule be changed into the fuel.

  • Guest

    Ethanol as a single fuel for automobiles
    Quote from the article:
    “Ethanol has been used in large scale in the Brazilian automobile fleet for about 30 years.”

    Where can I get the technical specifications for an automobile engine that runs on ethanol and does not require any other fuel?

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