Archive for March 2008

Abcesso Technology

Most Americans love seeing the phrase "plug 'n play." The alliteration bounces off your lips while the words magically translate to "no set-up required." Well, mostly. Every now and then, you have to turn a skeptical eye to a claim or product and here we may just need to turn two. In a recent press release, Brazilian technology company Abcesso announced that they would begin exporting an add-on component that essentially turns your standard gas-only car into a flex-fuel vehicle. The product is called AutoFFV. "Auto" because the unit is 100 percent fully automatic - plug 'n play. Once plugged in, your car will be able to run on "any mix of Gasoline and Ethanol."

To Abcesso's credit, they spend some time on the FAQ section of their website defending both ethanol and the AutoFFV. They claim that neither the fuel nor the product will do any damage to your car. They also visit the ol' cold start problem and say that the system software taps the temperature sensor and adjusts accordingly, so no issues should arise. As for the dashboard warning light problem they say that the "'check engine light' in Dodge/Chrysler vehicle will not occur with the AutoFFV system." Not sure why they don't mention Ford, as it's their flex-fuel cars which are currently under the magnifying glass of the NHTSA and FTC.

In any case, from what I can tell, very little has been done to address the use of ethanol blends as high as E85 in modern engines that weren't designed for them. Most reports I found discuss the benefits and safety of E10 while disregarding any blend much higher. Perhaps, we'll have to wait and see.

Abcesso Exp/Imp.
Av. Alfredo Baltazar da Silvera - Recreio dos Bandeirantes
27122790-710 RJ - Rio de Janeiro - Brasil
Tel: + 55 21 3521-7216
Skype: abcesso
Sunday, March 30, 2008
Posted by Fabiano Gallindo

Center of Excellence in Advanced Technologies

The Center of Excellence in Advanced Technologies of Rio Grande do Sul – CETA SENAI - RS, promotes the research and the technological innovation for the Brazilian industry through the cooperation between the Rio Grande do Sul State and the Fraunhofer Society from Germany.

To bring technological innovation for the benefit of enterprises through a co-operative effort with universities and R&D Centers, is the CETA SENAI Mission, thus promoting and contributing to the technological and social development of the state o Rio Grande do Sul.

The goal is to implement a paradigm changing in the matter of applied research to the industry, based in the Fraunhofer model, which promotes the integration of science and technology institutions with the industry needs.

The CETA SENAI -RS project is inserted in the agreement between Brazil and Germany about co-operation in applied reasearch and technological development between Universities and R&D Institutions from both countries, in force since 1969. In march of 1999, a Joint Commitee of Scientific and Technologic Cooperation has approved and considered as a priority project the colaboration between RS and FhGin technologic research.

The concept of CETA SENAI -RS has been developed and continuously improved over the last 9 years. It is based on performed industrial and R&D surveys that analysed the industrial demands and the academic capacities for technological innovation in RS. Currently, CETA SENAI performs over 21 innovation projects with applied research projects, technology transfer, and national and international R&D co-operations.

Av. Assis Brasil 8450 - 1º
Porto Alegre - RS - Brazil
CEP: 91140-000
Phone: +55 51 3347
FAX: +55 51 3364
Monday, March 17, 2008
Posted by Fabiano Gallindo

Petrojarl Cidade de Rio das Ostras

Maritime platform Petrojarl Cidade de Rio das Ostras, the first designed for extra-heavy oil production in the country, was baptised yesterday (12) by oil company Petrobras and should start operating in the third quarter of this year.

The equipment should be based in Badejo field, in Campos Basin (northern Rio de Janeiro state), with the objective of collecting information to be used in the project for development of the Siri reserves, in that field.

The unit has a capacity to process heavier and more viscous oil, 12.8 degrees API (the density measure used by the American Petroleum Institute), and it will be in water of 95 metres in depth situated 80 kilometres off the coast.

According to Petrobras, the Petrojarl production should be 15,000 barrels of oil a day, with a storage capacity up to 200,000 barrels of oil. The platform, added the state-owned company, should operate as "a laboratory for the development of other extra-heavy oil maritime fields," all in Campos Basin.

In the evaluation of researcher Giuseppe Bacoccoli, of the Engineering Post-Graduate Program at the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro (Coppe/UFRJ), once the platform has started operating, Petrobras "may increase Brazilian oil reserves by approximately 1 billion barrels". The country currently has around 15 billion barrels of oil equivalent in reserves.
Thursday, March 13, 2008
Posted by Fabiano Gallindo

Betting the fazenda

Mar 6th 2008 SÃO PAULO
From The Economist print edition

SETTLE down at one of São Paulo's sushi bars and before long you will overhear a discussion about a start-up business making energy from obscure weeds, or some other bright idea for relieving members of the country's growing middle class of their disposable income. A field study of this kind displays a strong sample bias, but the point is clear: Brazil does not lack go-getters. Yet according to a more thorough survey backed by the International Finance Corporation (IFC), a sister organisation of the World Bank, Brazilian entrepreneurs are a strikingly different breed to their peers in Russia and China.

Overall, some 82% of entrepreneurs in all three countries came from families with at least one other entrepreneur. They also tended to be taller than the average. But there the similarities end. In particular, Brazilian entrepreneurs seem to have a much lower appetite for risk.

The researchers measured this by offering interviewees hypothetical bets of varying risk and reward, and offering a choice between cash now or more money at a later date. The entrepreneurs in the sample were no more risk-taking than other Brazilians, and were also more likely to retire if offered a windfall than their peers elsewhere.

Perhaps this lack of staying power is because there are many more pleasant things to do in Brazil than work. But why should Brazilians be so risk-averse? Simeon Djankov, one of the study's authors, hypothesises that in real life Brazilian entrepreneurs run bigger risks than those elsewhere. Starting a business takes 152 days and requires 18 different procedures, according to the IFC's annual worldwide “Doing Business” study. It takes 2,600 hours for a medium-sized business to keep up with its taxes each year. The same hypothetical business would pay 69% of its second-year profits in tax, if it played by the rules and did not receive special tax breaks.

Brazilian entrepreneurs show an unsurprising willingness to bend the law. “Essentially what determines good entrepreneurship in Brazil is the ability to navigate around the bureaucracy,” suggests Mr Djankov. Eduardo Giannetti da Fonseca, an economist, concurs: “If Bill Gates had started Microsoft in a garage in Brazil, it would still be in the garage.” Harder to explain than why Brazil's entrepreneurs are as they are is why they exist at all.

Monday, March 10, 2008
Posted by Fabiano Gallindo

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Brazilian production engineer who works giving wings to the imagination of other Brazilian companies and their customers and helping them to implement their business with creativity and innovation.

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