The Museum of Tomorrow, in Rio de Janeiro, witnessed the highlights of sustainability and innovation during the award ceremony of the 8th edition of the Odebrecht Award for Sustainable Development held last Monday (17). The winning project of the night was the “Hybrid solar panel: a technology capable of generating power and hot water through a single, highly efficient system,” by Mechanical Engineering student Luis Hipólito, from the Federal University of Santa Catarina.

The event included a lecture by former-sailor and Olympic medalist Lars Grael, who urged participants to continue to develop sustainable projects. “I hope this is the beginning of a great idea that will bloom in the future. If you believe you have a good idea, fight for it,” said the athlete to the students. 

Lars also talked about the challenges of sustainability and how the subject has evolved over the years. Drawing on examples from his life as an Olympic sailor, such as the cleaning up of the Paranoá Lake, in the Federal District, he warned that there is still a long way to travel in the path to sustainability, and that great innovative ideas could help get there.

The ceremony was closed with a concert by Afroreggae, an Odebrecht partner for several social initiatives in Rio de Janeiro.

More than R$ 300,000 distributed in awards

The 8th edition of the Award received more than 250 projects submitted by 875 students under the advisory of 269 professors of Engineering, Architecture and Agronomics programs of 128 higher learning institutions in Brazil. With the objective of recognizing and encouraging university students to think sustainably, the award seeks to foster the generation of knowledge and its dissemination among society and the academic community. 

Projects are evaluated according to their economic feasibility, environmental responsibility and social inclusion. Each project received R$60,000, divided equally among the author (or authors), the guiding advisor professor and the institution, each of whom received R$ 20,000. Created in 2008, the Odebrecht Award has already distributed R$ 1 million in Brazil alone. The award is also offered in another 11 countries. 

See the complete list of winning projects and learn more about each of them on the website of the Odebrecht Award for Sustainable Development:

Hybrid solar panel: a technology capable of generating power and hot water through a single, highly efficient system
Federal University of Santa Catarina – UFSC
Student: Henrique Luis Hipólito – Mechanical Engineering
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Sergio Colle

Development of an integrated system to treat organic waste, and generate energy and agricultural benefits from its subproducts
Federal University of Minas Gerais – UFMG
Authors: Augusto de Assis Temponi Cabral Dias – Environmental Engineering
Catarina Azevedo Borges – Environmental Engineering
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Carlos Augusto de Lemos Chernicharo

Formulation of a commercial bio-detergent for application as a dispersant in oil and petroleum product spills in oceans
Catholic University of Pernambuco – UNICAP
Students: Bruno Galdino de Freitas – Chemical Engineering
Juliana Gabriela Moura Brito – Chemical Engineering
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Leonie Asfora Sarubbo

Microwave-assisted green ethylene production
Instituto Mauá de Tecnologia – Mauá
Students: Bárbara Bertin Mente – Chemical Engineering
Mônica Caroline Martins – Chemical Engineering
Suzana Mayumi Yamaguchi – Chemical Engineering
Viviane Ciola Sanchez – Chemical Engineering
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Luiz Alberto Jermolovicius

Reuse of water to produce grout at construction sites with TBM
University of São Paulo – USP
Students: Frederico Zucherato Ribeiro – Civil Engineering
Vinicius Olmos Battistini – Civil Engineering
Yuri Libero Florentino – Civil Engineering
Advisor: Prof. Dr. Flávio Leal Maranhão