In: Press Releases
1,200th ETHANOL-POWERED IPANEMA BOOSTS SUSTAINABILITY
Some 30% of the agricultural planes use fuel from renewable energy sources
Botucatu, Brazil, January 31, 2012 – Today, the Ipanema agricultural aircraft reached the significant milestone of 1,200 units delivered. The success of this veteran airplane has been proven, year after year, by its great operating results and customer orders. In 2011, 58 of the aircraft were sold in Brazil and the Mercosur region, for an increase of 45% over the previous year.
“The evolution of the Ipanema, with its new technologies, has transformed the airplane into a symbol of aviation sustainability,” said Fábio Bertoldi Carretto, Embraer’s Ipanema Sales Manager. “The product’s reliability has been proven, throughout more than 40 years of uninterrupted production. Studies are constantly made to improve the aircraft, which is now powered by ethanol, focusing on customers’ needs and the sustainability of agribusiness.”
The commemorative Ipanema is the 35th to be received by Sana Aviação Agrícola Ltda., since 1977, when the company was founded. Sana is headquartered in the city of Leme, in outstate São Paulo, and is the largest operator of the model, with 12 currently flying.
“The main advantages of the Ipanema, over land-based spraying machines, are its lower operating cost, greater output, and less environmental impact,” said Bruno Ricardo de Vasconcelos, owner of Sana Agro Aérea Ltda. “The airplane is very adequate for the needs of companies like ours, which seek to offer customers a competitive edge in the spraying business.”
The Ipanema is the first aircraft to be produced in series, in the world, that leaves the factory already certified to fly with ethanol (hydrous ethanol), which is the same fuel used in automobiles. This alternative source of renewable energy, derived from sugar cane, has reduced environmental impact and operating and maintenance costs, while improving the airplane’s overall performance, thus making it an attractive agribusiness tool.
As the leader of Brazil’s agricultural aviation market, with about a 75% share, the Ipanema is used mainly for crop dusting, which avoids crops being crushed by machinery tires and makes the operation more flexible. It can also be used for fighting fires, seeding rivers with fish, and spraying pesticides to protect against insects and larvae.