Case study: Theobroma Cocoa Processing Solar Powered, Nigeria

01/01/01

The Theobroma Cocoa factory in Nigeria is preparing to install a large and sustainable energy system from Alfen B.V., of Almere, the Netherlands. This innovative system combines solar energy, bio energy from cocoa shells and a large-scale battery storage for the production of energy and steam.

 

 

ECOM’s Theobrama factory processes cocoa beans into high-end cocoa products for the chocolate industry. This sustainable end-to-end energy installation has over 8,000 solar panels which will be installed on the roofs and at the factory terrain of Theobroma, and as two energy storage systems of 1MWh each, will be the largest local energy storage project in Nigeria. This complex systems integration combines solar energy distribution and storage, and includes the addition of bio energy produced with the cocoa bean waste of the Theobroma factory. It combines solar energy in the daytime with diesel generator power at night – The plant operates 24hrs per day. The biomass boiler for steam generation includes a heat recovery system using the gas from the generator exhausts to generate steam at night. The solar system is modular, meaning that increased power demand during daytime can be accommodated by adding extra panels and controls to the existing system. This integrated energy concept and system fits well with Theobroma’s desire to attain an annual savings of over one million liters of diesel, create a reliable and sustainable energy system, while adhering to tenents of Corporate Sustainable Responsibility. This project, regarded as a giant innovation, is the first of its kind in West Africa, and as far as we know, the world.

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