In 2008, Instream developed a strategic relationship with BAE Systems, a global defense, aerospace and security company employing over 88,000 people worldwide. This strategic relationship resulted in a technology partnership agreement that enables Instream to leverage BAE Systems’ significant capabilities in hydrodynamics, maritime systems, information technology, system modelling and design. Design work with BAE Systems has led to a 71% increase in turbine efficiency.
In 2012, Instream also developed beganinitiated a relationship with the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation (USBR), which resulted in a multi-year site use agreement for a hydrokinetic demonstration at the Roza Canal. Instream was the first to develop and install a spanning structure and turbine system in an operational canal, and was the first company to receive a multi-year facility-use agreement for a hydrokinetic power project with the USBR.
In 2009/ 2010 Instream worked closely with BC Hydro, to developdeploy an array of turbines a project at the Duncan Dam in B.C. in 2010. BC Hydro provided access to the facility and to the Duncan Dam for the purposes of the project, and provided support services on a contract basis through Powertech Labs, BC Hydro’s clean energy subsidiary that specializes in clean energy engineering consulting, testing, and power solutions. This collaborative project with BC Hydro and BAE Systems enabled Instream to deploy the world’s first array of vertical axis hydrokinetic turbines in a dam outflow channel.
Instream has worked with ITPE since 2014 on projects ranging from market assessment to engineering design projects. In 2015, a collaborative effort between Instream and ITPE received the EUREKA label for the design of a preferred floating platform concept. ITPE is a leading international energy consultancy, which specializes in renewable ocean energy, tidal engineering and related economic and environmental considerations. The project will complete Instream’s second generation platform design for the deployment of its multi-turbine array hydrokinetic system for coastal marine applications.
Ongoing research at the Roza Canal is being performed in collaboration with Sandia National Labs and aims to develop a tool to accurately predict hydrokinetic impacts to canals.
Instream is working with UBC and U of A to evaluate composite materials for core rotor designs to improve costs and reduce turbine weight.