Green power for green cosmetics from Colombia

Today we report from Colombia, where IBC SOLAR Spain has equipped a cosmetics company for products made from sustainable palm oil with a PV system. By producing its own electricity, the company can significantly reduce its high energy costs and contribute to the energy transition in Colombia. 

Sustainable production thanks to solar power

Caribbean Eco Soaps from Santa Marta, Colombia, produces products derived from palm oil for the cosmetics, food and energy industries. The company has a constantly high energy consumption due to its production and has therefore decided to cover a large part of its demand of 3.68 GWh per year with solar energy.

The photovoltaic system was installed on two buildings, one with a trapezoidal sheet metal gable roof, the other on the shed canopy of the unloading station, under which the trucks unload the raw materials. The 606.15 kWp system, consisting of 1,347 LONGi LR4-72HIH-450M solar modules, 10 SMA STP50-US-40 CORE 1 inverters and the IBC TopFix 200 pitched roof mounting system, produces 1.13 GWh of solar electricity per year. This saves 387 tonnes of CO2 every year.

A reliable technology partner

Caribbean Eco Soaps chose IBC SOLAR as its technology partner because of its many years of experience and warranty service, and commissioned us to carry out the project as EPS contractor. Our colleagues from Spain and Colombia took over the detailed planning of the plant, supplied the components, accompanied the installation and provided support during commissioning and maintenance.

Technical challenges

The soap production facility is located near the port of Santa Marta. As it is a coastal area with high wind speeds, the correct dimensioning of the mounting system and the distribution of the modules on the roof were of great importance. Safety played an vital role in the design. The inverters had to be specially configured to connect to the grid of gas generators. This required specific parameters for the correct operation of the installed machines.

The installation of the PV system is an important step towards sustainable production in Colombia. Caribbean Eco Soaps’ decision to produce its own green electricity shows how the industry can become independent of high costs and fossil fuels in the future.

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