Optimization of PEM fuel cell flow channels-modeling analysis and experimental tests

Hong Liu, Peiwen Li

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

The dimensions of gas flow channels and walls/ribs of PEM fuel cells are optimized using a convenient mathematical model. Experimental work for several PEM fuel cells with modeling-optimized gas flow channels was conducted, and the tested results validate the modeling work and the optimization. The model considered average mass transfer and species' concentrations in flow channels, which allows the determination of an average concentration polarization, the humidity in anode and cathode gas channels, and thus the proton conductivity of membranes, as well as the activation polarization. An electrical circuit for the current and ion conduction is applied to analyze the ohmic losses from anode current collector to cathode current collector. The modeling computation required relatively less computational time and thus can be applied to compute a large number of cases with various flow channel designs and operating parameters for optimization analysis. Optimum ratio of the width of flow channels against the walls/ribs was found from the modeling analysis. In the experimental work, PEM fuel cells were fabricated based on the flow channel dimensions optimized from the modeling analysis. Experimental results agreed with the modeling analysis satisfactorily in respect to the comparison of V-I performance between fuel cells with several optimized designs. The model is recommended as a tool for optimization design of gas flow channels for PEM fuel cells. The optimization results are of significance to the improvement of PEM fuel cell designs and performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationASME 2013 11th Int. Conf. on Fuel Cell Science, Eng. and Technology Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conf. and the ASME 2013 7th Int. Conf. on Energy Sustainability, FUELCELL 2013
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2013
EventASME 2013 11th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, FUELCELL 2013 Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conference and the ASME 2013 7th International Conference on Energy Sustainability - Minneapolis, MN, United States
Duration: Jul 14 2013Jul 19 2013

Publication series

NameASME 2013 11th Int. Conf. on Fuel Cell Science, Eng. and Technology Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conf. and the ASME 2013 7th Int. Conf. on Energy Sustainability, FUELCELL 2013

Other

OtherASME 2013 11th International Conference on Fuel Cell Science, Engineering and Technology, FUELCELL 2013 Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conference and the ASME 2013 7th International Conference on Energy Sustainability
CountryUnited States
CityMinneapolis, MN
Period7/14/137/19/13

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Fuel Technology

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    Liu, H., & Li, P. (2013). Optimization of PEM fuel cell flow channels-modeling analysis and experimental tests. In ASME 2013 11th Int. Conf. on Fuel Cell Science, Eng. and Technology Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conf. and the ASME 2013 7th Int. Conf. on Energy Sustainability, FUELCELL 2013 [V001T01A001] (ASME 2013 11th Int. Conf. on Fuel Cell Science, Eng. and Technology Collocated with the ASME 2013 Heat Transfer Summer Conf. and the ASME 2013 7th Int. Conf. on Energy Sustainability, FUELCELL 2013). https://doi.org/10.1115/FuelCell2013-18006