This isn’t just a theoretical exercise. Toyota is already using the hydrogen burner for forging at its Honsha plant, and it plans to replace 1,000 natural gas burners across its Japanese plants. It will “gradually” introduce the hydrogen burners at other plants, while other companies under Toyota’s umbrella are also looking at the technology.
In some ways, the company didn’t have much choice. It already challenged itself to eliminate CO2 emissions at its plants, and the burner helps achieve that goal without nasty side-effects. It also helps Japan’s broader environmental goals, which include eliminating non-electric cars by 2050. The big question is whether or not other companies will use burners like these. If they don’t, the effect of this breakthrough could be relatively limited.