Toyota Motor Corporation and its subsidiary, Woven Planet Holdings Inc, have developed a working prototype of its portable hydrogen cartridge. This cartridge design will facilitate the everyday transport and supply of hydrogen energy to power a broad range of daily life applications in and outside of the home. Toyota and Woven Planet will conduct Proof of Concept trials in various places, including Woven City, a human-centered smart city of the future currently being constructed in Susono City, Shizuoka Prefecture.
Toyota and Woven Planet are studying a number of viable pathways to carbon neutrality and consider hydrogen to be a promising solution. Hydrogen has significant advantages. Zero Carbon Dioxide (CO2) is emitted when hydrogen is used. Furthermore, when hydrogen is produced using renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, geothermal, and biomass, CO2 emissions are minimized during the production process as well. Hydrogen can be used to generate electricity in fuel cell systems and can also be used as a combustion fuel. For further information see the IDTechEx report on The Hydrogen Economy, Fuel Cells and Hydrogen Production Methods.
Together with ENEOS Corporation, Toyota and Woven Planet are working to build a comprehensive hydrogen-based supply chain aimed at expediting and simplifying production, transport, and daily usage. These trials will focus on meeting the energy needs of Woven City residents and those living in its surrounding communities.
Benefits of Using Hydrogen Cartridges
- Portable, affordable, and convenient energy that makes it possible to bring hydrogen to where people live, work, and play without the use of pipes
- Prototype dimensions 400 mm (16") in length x 180 mm (7") in diameter
- Target weight 5 kg (11 lbs)
- Swappable for easy replacement and quick recharging
- Volume flexibility allows for a broad variety of daily use applications
- Small-scale infrastructure can meet energy needs in remote and non-electrified areas and be swiftly dispatched in the case of a disasterNext Steps for the Hydrogen Cartridge
Today most hydrogen is generated from fossil fuels and used for industrial purposes such as fertilizer production and petroleum refining. To use hydrogen as an energy source in our homes and daily life, the technology must meet different safety standards and be adjusted to new environments. In the future, it is anticipated that hydrogen will be generated with very low carbon emissions and used in a wider variety of applications. The Japanese government is working on a range of studies to promote the safe early adoption of hydrogen and Toyota and its business partners are offering cooperation and support.
The goal is to help hydrogen become commonplace by making this clean form of energy safe, convenient, and affordable. By establishing the underlying supply chain, the companies hope to facilitate the flow of a larger volume of hydrogen and fuel more applications. Woven City will explore and test an array of energy applications using hydrogen cartridges including mobility, household applications, and many future possibilities.
The ultimate goal of this project is to realize a carbon-neutral society where everyone can access clean energy, first in Japan and then throughout the world. Toyota and Woven Planet aim to develop best practices for incorporating clean hydrogen energy into daily life by conducting human-centered demonstrations in and around Woven City. These real-life experiences will help us learn how to best transform hydrogen into a familiar, well-used, and well-loved form of energy.
Source and top image: Toyota