HISTORY - CENANO
NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF TECHNOLOGY (INT)
The National Institute of Technology (INT) has a strategic role focused on innovation and technological development in the country, which dates back to its creation in 1921. Currently, this research unit of the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovation and Communications (MCTIC), based in Rio de Janeiro, maintains a partnership with the productive sector, disseminating innovative technological solutions, offering specialized technical services and certifying products.
INT's activities have always been marked by its pioneering spirit. It was the first to develop technologies for the use of ethanol as fuel for automotive vehicles, metrological regulation, studies on vegetable oils as biofuels, studies on processes for the use of charcoal in the steel industry and technological information service to serve the business sector. The Institute also contributed to important episodes, such as the confirmation of the existence of oil in Brazil, in Lobato (State of Bahia), the development of the concrete test method, the anthropometric survey of the Brazilian population and the technology validation in the former national program 'Proálcool'.
The association of INT with EMBRAPII (Brazilian Agency for Industrial Research and Innovation) has placed the Institute in a strategic position to stimulate innovation in companies. Taking advantage of its polytechnic characteristic, the INT has the conditions to develop innovation projects demanded by the industries to establish themselves in an increasingly competitive market.
INT combines agile and transversal actions, involving competences in Oil and Gas, Petrochemical, Green Chemistry, Health, Renewable Energy, Social Technologies and Defense. The infrastructure counts with 20 laboratories, besides having highly qualified professionals in research and development.
At INT, the development of chemical technologies is improved by a modern laboratory complex, associated to the solid training of a significant part of its researchers with specializations, master's and doctoral degrees in polymers, catalysis, corrosion, analytical chemistry, organic and inorganic chemistry, biochemistry, spectroscopy and electron microscopy. This association allows proposing articulated and complementary solutions to the relevant issues identified by the national chemical industry in petroleum, gas and petrochemicals, renewable chemistry, biofuels, agribusiness, polymers and synthesis of organic and inorganic structures, among others.
In a complementary and transversal way, INT integrates the National Nanotechnology System (SISNANO), through its Nanotechnology Characterization Center (CENANO), with the status of a Strategic Laboratory. This competence allows proposing innovative solutions in Nanoscience, based on Chemical, Organic and Inorganic Technologies.
The Institute is also the first federal public research unit accredited to certify products. Since 2001, it has been acting as a Product Certification Body (OCP 0023), rehearsing and conferring the conformity mark to products, such as male condoms, alcohol packs, matches, helmets, surgical and procedural gloves, breast implants, cachaça (Brazilian sugarcane spirit) and organic products.
NANOTECHNOLOGY CHARACTERIZATION CENTER (CENANO)
In recent years, several INT projects have been financed by FINEP (Brazilian Founding for Studies and Projects), ANP (National Agency for Oil, Gas and Biofuel) and Petrobras, in different areas of knowledge. Among them, it is important to highlight some related to infrastructure, such as CT-INFRA-PROINFRA/01/2006, signed in the agreement FINEP 01.07.0340.00, and the Petrobras agreement 0050.0042851.08.4, which allowed the creation of the Nanotechnology Characterization Center (CENANO), marking the strategic importance of the nanotechnology theme in the Institute.
Although CENANO was inaugurated on November 22, 2010, the beginning of INT's operation in Nanotechnology dates back to 2001, when it participated in phase I of the Nanomaterials and Applications Network Implantation Project, launched by CNPq and coordinated by the Federal University of Rio Grande do Norte (UFRN), involving the areas of catalysis and materials of the Institution. In 2002, its initiatives turned to the elaboration of a Nanotechnology Structuring Project, submitted to the Ministry of Science, Technology, Innovations and Communication (MCTIC), and later to the preparation of the 2006-2010 Master Plan, with programs focused on nanotechnology prospecting activities and, more recently, with the creation, in 2007, of the Management Group in Nanotechnology, with a main focus on the management of these actions, without losing sight of previous contributions. Once the guidelines were defined, the goal became the implementation of the actions focused on nanotechnology research, acting on two fronts: internal, focused on the consolidation of these actions involving the areas of materials, catalysis and corrosion, also acting in the specification of equipment necessary to the characterization of nanometric structures; and the external one, aiming at the insertion of the institute in forums of debate and instances of regulation of the different aspects involved with nanotechnology in Brazil. In the first case, during 2008, the technical requirements for the purchase of three equipment were defined: a tungsten filament scanning electron microscope (SEM), a field emission scanning electron microscope (FEG) and a X-rays photoelectron spectrometer by (XPS), which arrived at the institute at the end of 2009 and were installed as of 2010.
Subsequently, new microscopes were installed, and today CENANO also has a high resolution transmission electron microscope (TEM), a confocal microscope, an environmental scanning electron microscope and a dual beam scanning electron microscope with Focused Ion Beam (FIB).
In 2013, CENANO was invited to participate in the MCTIC's SISNANO network, whose purpose is the integration of several laboratories of research institutes and universities in Brazil, encompassing industrial and commercial companies, government agencies, universities and other technological centers in nanotechnology.
CENANO's activities promotes a significant advance in INT's technical areas, allowing a considerable improvement in meeting the specific demands of the sectors of Health, Oil and Gas, Petrochemicals, Renewable Energies and Defense, INT's main focus areas.