RER Hydro developed the TREK turbine technology to generate power from river currents, similar to projects that harness tidal currents in oceans. It will build the turbines, with Boeing supplying program management, engineering, manufacturing, and supplier-management expertise.

Boeing in Partnership to Build Tidal Power Plant

Nov. 12, 2013
40 turbines, 9 MW Clean power, no environmental impact Boeing has global technology rights

St. Louis-based Boeing Defense, Space & Security and its partner RER Hydro entered into a multi-year agreement with the Province of Quebec to provide 40 hydrokinetic turbines that will be installed in the St. Lawrence River, near Montreal, and generate about 9 MW of energy.

Last year, Boeing and RER agreed to terms giving Boeing exclusive rights to market and sell RER’s TREK (Kinetic Energy Recovery Turbine) technology worldwide.

The investment value of the project was not announced.

RER Hydro is a Montreal-based engineering group that develops hydroelectric projects based on river currents. Its turbine designs are adapted from similar technology already used to capture energy from ocean tides.

RER will build the TREK turbines in a new manufacturing plant in Montreal, the first of its kind in the world. The St. Lawrence River development will be the first commercial installation of this technology, though the developer has been testing its prototype for over three years.  

According to RER, hydrokinetic turbines can be a low-impact, renewable power source, and Boeing’s announcement described their proposed project as “the world’s largest river-generated, hydrokinetic turbine farm.”

CEO Imad Hamad explained that, "because it’s not a dam, the turbines generate clean power without disrupting the river flow or the natural habitat.

“Numerous independent studies demonstrate that our technology has no negative impact on fish or other marine life," Hamad said

Boeing is providing program management, engineering, manufacturing, and supplier-management expertise, to the development, and will service the turbines once they are installed. "This agreement between industry and government will deliver renewable power while protecting the environment," according to Boeing Defense, Space & Security president and CEO Dennis Muilenburg. "It also builds on Boeing's long-term, strategic partnership with Canada, supporting customers from aerospace and defense to clean energy, generating high-quality jobs, and making a difference in the community."

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