Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters (CME), in collaboration with the National Research Council of Canada Industrial Research Assistance Program (NRC-IRAP), have announced that SEI Industries is both the regional and national 2011 Innovation Insights winner for new technology based on its revolutionary Bulk Aviation Transport Tank (BATT) product.

As the regional winner for BC and the national winner for Canada, the award committee noted that the BATT is the world’s first and most advanced collapsible, double-walled, baffled tank that lets users safely carry bulk fuel to remote sites via aircraft. SEI Industries Ltd. is the first and only company to receive Transport Canada approval for this type of tank.

With many commercial operations located in remote areas with little infrastructure, fuel supply can become a critical commodity. For the past few decades, the most common solution was to fly bulk fuel in using drums that were never designed for aircraft interiors. Once the fuel was offloaded into storage containers, the same aircraft then departed with empty drums as its ‘paying’ cargo. Understandably, this empty return flight doubled the actual cost of fuel delivery simply because the aircraft could not be utilized for any other cargo.

"The BATT allows these operators to eliminate fuel drums and cut fuel hauling costs in half by flying fuel in then folding up the BATT to free up usable space for back haul cargo. It provides a huge savings and it’s a lot less harmful to the environment," said Paul Reichard, remote site division manager for SEI Industries.

The BATT took a number of months to develop and was first deployed in 2010 for use by South American law enforcement in Columbia. SEI is now focused on expanding its range of models as well as gaining approval from the FAA and ICAO to bring the BATT to the rest of the world.

"We are extremely proud that one of our members has won this prestigious award. SEI Industries is a very active participant in product development and commercialization programs and events. We are very pleased to see SEI Industries recognized for the great work they continue to do in product development and innovation," adds Peter Jeffrey, vice president, CME.