Lieutenant Eniele Santos and Major Oliveira Lima
One of the great names in the Brazilian aeronautical industry. This is how the Aeronautical Engineer Claudio Barreto Viana, who passed away last Thursday, September 8, in the city of Novo Hamburgo, Rio Grande do Sul (RS), will be forever remembered.
Founder of the Aeromot Group and Aeroeletrônica (this company was acquired by Elbit, in 2001, creating AEL Sistemas, one of the largest and most important in the sector), Viana leaves two children and three grandchildren. “Our warrior got tired and rested. A toast to him who loved a party and left a few days before his 91st birthday party,” posted his daughter, Maria Alice, when communicating the departure of her father, who would have turned 91 on September 11.
Engineer Viana, as he was known, graduated from the Instituto Tecnológico da Aeronáutica (ITA), an agency linked to the Aeronautics Command (COMAER), and was part of the Brazilian aviation history. At the head of Aeromot, a company that had an industrial park in the North Zone of Porto Alegre (RS), he developed and manufactured motor glider models used by security segments, for military training and for private aviation.
Two of these aircraft had worldwide repercussions. The first one was the AMT-100, “Ximango”, manufactured in 1980, which became the only one of this model to make the oceanic crossing of the South Atlantic, having, later on, a new version, the AMT-200. And the second, a low-wing land-based aircraft, which received the name “Guri” – AMT-600.
In addition, Aeromot was a pioneer in structuring the aviation industry, even manufacturing aircraft components for other large companies, such as Embraer, and even providing services for Varig, the first airline in Brazil.
“Viana was a great entrepreneur who leveraged the aeronautical industry in Rio Grande do Sul, working in the areas of maintenance, production of aircraft components and avionics,” said AEL Sistemas, in a statement. AEL Sistemas is currently dedicated to the development, manufacturing, logistical support and maintenance of defense sectors, and is a pioneer in the modernization of aircraft of the Brazilian Air Force (FAB).
The Dean of ITA, Professor Anderson Ribeiro Correia, recalled that Engineer Claudio Viana was in the first ITA class and did all his undergraduate studies in the facilities in São José dos Campos, from 1950 to 1954, in the campus designed by Marshall Casimiro Montenegro Filho. “Not coincidentally, Casimiro Montenegro was chosen class president of the Class of ’54, and in his speech he said: ‘I can’t build the aeronautical industry now. One day you will!’ Claudio Viana confirmed the predictions of the class president and Patron of Aeronautical Engineering,” he recalled.
Claudio Barreto Viana
Born in Cachoeira do Sul, in 1931. In 1953, he graduated in Aeronautical Engineering from ITA. In 1955 he began his professional activity as Maintenance Engineer at the now defunct company Varig, in Porto Alegre, where he worked for 12 years, at which time he already held the position of Assistant Maintenance Director.
When he left Varig, Viana took a leap in his life when he became a founding partner of Aeromot Aeronaves e Motores, together with his colleague and friend João Claudio Jotz. From then on, the company consolidated itself as one of the largest groups operating in the field of aviation, aircraft maintenance and manufacturing. In the mid-2000s, Aeromot was sold to a group from Belo Horizonte, which follows the precepts of one of the greatest icons of aeronautical aviation.
*** Translated by the DEFCONPress FYI team ***