December 3, 2007

Sustainable Projects win the 6th Alcoa Innovation in Aluminum Award

The four winning projects were announced on Wednesday (28th) in an awarding ceremony which took place in São Paulo

A project for a folding walker, a compact mobile housing unit, an alternative cooker and solid waste management were the winning projects in the 6th Alcoa Innovation in Aluminum Award. Of the total 1,347 jobs registered this year, 241 were received and 11 were selected to compete in the finals. The four winning projects were announced on Wednesday (28th) in an awarding ceremony which took place in São Paulo. The awards were received from the hands of Franklin Feder, President of Alcoa Latin America and Caribbean, and Mohammad Zaid, executive vice president of Market Strategy, Technology and Quality for Alcoa Worldwide. 

The winning idea in the Management Planning Category (student modality), was Sol-ão - Fogão Alternativo (Alternative Cooker), by Paulo Henrique de Faria, Luciana A. Rodrigues, Luiz Fernando R. Alves and Márcio Hessel Verraci students of Mechanical Production Technology of Centro Universitário Itajubá (MG). The selection of the theme came from the initiative of one of the participants in the group. After several conversations to discuss which project to present, the participants arrived at a consensus to design an alternative cooker, easy to produce and low-cost, with ample application possibilities. The idea for the cooker is to guarantee environmental sustainability applying the concept of reuse of aluminum. The students chose to carry out the work with a focus on the social responsibility area, since they considered to be extremely important to help underprivileged communities. “We were confident in the competitiveness of our project, but we were aware of the quality of the other projects as well, as such, competition was very intense”, reveals Paulo Henrique de Faria, one of the team members. As a veteran, Paulo Henrique approved the format adopted for the awarding this year. “It has a lot of adrenaline, but it's wonderful to cheer all along with the entire team during the announcement.”

The first place in the Management Planning Category (professional modality), was awarded to researchers from Itajubá (MG) - Marcos André de Oliveira, Carlos Henrique Pereira Mello and Eduardo Miguel da Silva – with the work Selo-Aluminiar (Aluminiar-Seal) and the innovation in the recycling cycle in the quest for sustainability. The team revealed, during the ceremony, that the idea for the project came from the assessment of the current situation of scrap collectors and their families within the aluminum recycling cycle. “Based on that assessment, we selected the theme of our project, as an opportunity to create a multidisciplinary solution while generating social value. It's the way of fostering recycling, expanding this market, and at the same time helping with environmental awareness,” they explained. 

In the Project category (student modality), the winner was a project for design and inclusion: a folding walker design by Kauré Ferreira Martins and Eduardo de Mattos Egydio, students of the School of Industrial Design from Universidade Estadual Paulista. Eduardo and Kauré explain that the idea to work with a social inclusion project was based on assuring safety, comfort and efficiency to the mobility of people, especially those who require the aid of walkers for their locomotion. As such, the students spent long periods of time researching in the fields of design, ergonomics and rehabilitation in order to develop the folding walker. 

And the last winner of the night was Lutero Proscholdt Almeida, an architect from Viana (ES), with the Tatu - Hausmachine. For him, the idea for the project was to create a compact mobile housing unit in which aluminum could be used from the structural conception up to the self-sufficiency in power. In other words, an equipment that offers perfect housing conditions while causing minimal environmental impact. Excited, he insisted on sharing his joy and achievements with his parents, friends and the organization for the awarding event. “I congratulate the quality of the awarding event and Alcoa for the development and especially for the format which encompasses ideas of diversity,” he adds. 

The criteria adopted to choose the winning entries in the Project category were: degree of innovation of the project, technical and commercial feasibility for the development of the product, creativity and presentation. In the Management Planning category, the panel of judges considered the following items: quality in planning, degree of innovation and originality, cost/benefit ratio, potential applicability, presentation and sustainability. 

An additional differential in the awarding this year is that all students who made it to the finals received R$ 1,000. The same rule applied to professionals who participated in the Award. The coaches who guided the students received a palm top and a diploma. 

The student or team indicated by the panel of judges as the author of the best Project in each category received an award of R$ 9,000 thousand and a trophy, and additional R$ 5,000 for the corresponding professor-coach. The learning institution from which the students came received R$ 5,000 worth of teaching material. Professionals were entitled to an Award of R$ 11,000 in both categories. 

Students from almost every State in Brazil, studying Design, Social Communication, Business Administration, Architecture, Engineering, Economy, Physiotherapy, Fashion, among others, from many learning institutions, registered this year for the award, aiming at producing projects based on the innumerous possibilities provided by aluminum, in addition to contributing to the sustainable development in the production chain of the metal. Among the professionals, the majority of the entries were made by architects, designers, business administrators and engineers. 

“We are proud of the results achieved with this Award. The projects were very creative and innovative. We see that great ideas can contribute to sustainable development and improvement in the quality of life of people”, explains Franklin Feder, president of Alcoa Latin America and Caribbean. 

Honorable Mention and Finalists 
In addition to the winners, the other finalists were present in the awarding ceremony. A veteran of the Alcoa Award, Thiago Augusto de Mendonça Caldeira, student of Architecture from Centro Universitário do Leste in the State of Minas Gerais, participated this year with the project – non-motorized urban transportation vehicle. According to the student, the idea for the project came from his interest in both cars and bicycles, associated with the current need to reduce consumption. 

In 2004, Caldeira participated with the project of a wheelchair. He received honorable mention. Not having received first place did not bother Caldeira. “Next year I'll be here again!”, he promises

The finalist projects in the Project Category (student modality) were: no- motorized urban transportation vehicle by Thiago Augusto de Mendonça Caldeira, student of Architecture from Centro Universitário do Leste; and Ivoleg, an aluminum prosthesis for transfemural amputees, by Carlos Henrique Morellato, student of Design Technology at Centro Universitário Vila Velha (ES).

Honorable mention in this category was awarded to Nei de Souza Lima, student of Technology in Environment at Universidade Estadual de Maringá (PR), with the aluminum boy and Jussara Ribeiro, Luiz Fernando Vales, Tiago Ribeiro Neves and Vinicius Girardi Silva who study Electronic Engineering at Escola de Engenharia de São Carlos (SP), with a brake system. 

Finalists for professionals in the Project category were: Leonardo Molinar, Luiz Gustavo de Lima Batista and Wesley Morais Silva, Adman and designers, respectively, from Goiânia (GO), with the thoracic-lumbar pedestal; Louise Brasileiro Quirino, Herbert L. Santos da Rocha and Itamar Ferreira da Silva, designers from Campina Grande (PB), with a portable table for notebooks. 

Honorable mention in this category was awarded to Milton André Garcia Sola, designer from São Carlos (SP), for the project aluminum, sustainability and innovation in the development of packaging. 

In the Management Planning category (student modality), the finalists were Alice Medeiros de Lima, Thályta Fraga Pacheco and Wilson Galvão de Morais Júnior, Chemical Engineering Students from Universidade Federal de Uberlândia (MG), the project Grua - acronym for gestão de resíduos urbanos de alumínio meaning management of urban aluminum waste. 

Another project qualified for the finals was: Environmental sustainability based on company-consumer integration, entered by Juliana P. Potiens, Flávia C. Cravo, Murilo Henrique C. Gomes, Natália P. Dariva, Nathalia T. Romero, students of Social Communication at Universidade Estadual de Londrina (PR).

The finalists for professionals in the Management Planning category were Giovanni Maria Arrigone and Cristine do Nascimento Mutti, professors from Florianópolis (SC), Light tube for ambient lighting using aluminum beverage cans. 

“All projects which made it to the finals are naturally great winners. They reflect the effort, dedication, creativity and search for sustainable solutions and alternatives, which may contribute to a better future”, highlights Feder. 

A novelty in this year's 6th Alcoa Innovation in Aluminum Award was the support from the Brazilian Aluminum Association (ABAL), which provided lectures for technical support to the participants. In the previous edition, the contest had the support of institutional entities such as the Brazilian Architect Institute (IAB), Engineering Institute, UniEthos, Higher Level Learning / Research Association in Design in Brazil(AEnD-BR), Product Designer Association (ADP), Brazilian Metallurgical and Materials Association (ABM) and the São Paulo Design Center.

Embraer receives accolade
During the ceremony, Alcoa paid homage to Embraer. The Brazilian aviation giant, represented by Mr. Artur Coutinho, Vice-President for Industrial Operations at Embraer, was awarded for the long and successful commercial partnership between the companies. The trophy was delivered by President Franklin Feder; Nemércio Nogueira, Director of Institutional Affairs at Alcoa and by Mohammad Zaid Executive Vice President for Market Strategy, Technology and Quality for Alcoa Worldwide; Harry Kiskaddon, Commercial Director for Aerospace with Alcoa Worldwide and Colin Davies Sales Director for Aerospace with Alcoa Worldwide.

To wrap-up the awarding ceremony, Mohammad Zaid made a speech highlighting the important advancements achieved by Alcoa in the market and congratulating everyone for an important awarding initiative such as the Innovation in Aluminum. 

About Alcoa
Alcoa is the world's leading producer and manager of primary aluminum, fabricated aluminum and alumina facilities, and is active in all major aspects of the industry. Alcoa serves the aerospace, automotive, packaging, building and construction, commercial transportation and industrial markets, bringing design, engineering, production and other capabilities of Alcoa's businesses to customers. In addition to aluminum products and components including flat-rolled products, hard alloy extrusions, and forgings, Alcoa also markets Alcoa® wheels, fastening systems, precision and investment castings, structures and building systems. The company has 116,000 employees in 44 countries and has been named one of the top most sustainable corporations in the world at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. More information can be found at