SEI (Solar Energy Innovations) designs and manufactures portable solar power equipment in Merritt, British Columbia. Our products are designed to be turnkey, easy to transport and operate in Canadian Winters. We are focused on reducing fossil fuel dependence and have designed products catered to applications which replace diesel generators primarily. We enjoy designing things, and I am so thrilled to have a great team around me who enjoy tinkering just like me!
Tell us about yourself?
Since I was young, I’ve always wanted to promote solar energy. It truly is the coolest and most cost-effective way for individuals and families to produce electricity. There were no solar courses in school or post-secondary, so I had to teach myself on weekends. Only after years of doing this as a hobby could we afford to build projects full-time. Thankful every day that we can test and push what is possible.
If you could go back in time a year or two, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Buy more equipment and parts before all your suppliers decide to increase their prices by 20 to 50 per cent.
What problem does your business solve?
SEI aims to replace diesel and gas power generators from applications as small as a portable light plant to those as big as a mine or mill. Our solar farm solutions also make solar installation easy and cost-effective.
What is the inspiration behind your business?
My family has been in the mining business, and I have always wanted to design a mine which can operate from electricity, possibly from the sun. In the future, I envision SEI’s contributions to the construction methods behind solar farms will make solar commonplace in the industry in Canada and beyond.
What is your magic sauce?
Our products revolve around steel and cleaver design. While solar projects are typically custom and require several different steps to complete, we have designed a system which is entirely turnkey and deployable. A collapsible solar system which can be folded up in the field.
What is the plan for the next 5 years? What do you want to achieve?
Over the next five years, SEI aims to offset millions of liters of diesel and gasoline. Our hope is that over the next decade, our solutions will open the industry’s eyes to what is possible and embrace solar as a direct competition of fossil fuel power sources.
What is the biggest challenge you’ve faced so far?
We have designed many prototypes over the last decade which did not make it to commercial production. While this can be challenging and frustrating, failure and mistakes are lessons needed to make a product great. I am just so thankful for the support of my team and mentors, who have helped me keep some of my sanity along the way.
How can people get involved?
SEI offers ground-mounted solar solutions and towable solar generators in Western Canada. If you wish to inquire about our products, please call or text Eric Little directly at 867-536-5053.