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Numerical investigation of transport phenomena in high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells with different flow field designs

Li, Shian LU ; Yuan, Jinliang LU ; Xie, Gongnan LU and Sunden, Bengt LU (2017) In Numerical Heat Transfer; Part A: Applications 72(11). p.807-820
Abstract

In this work, a three-dimensional, non-isothermal, steady-state model for high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells with phosphoric acid polybenzimidazole membrane has been developed using computational fluid dynamics. The importance of the gas flow field design on the transport characteristics and cell performance is revealed by solving the mass, momentum, species, energy, and charge conservation equations. The numerical results show that the best cell performance is provided by the fuel cell with serpentine flow channel flow field. However, the pressure drop is also very high due to the large length of the serpentine channel. In addition, the velocity, oxygen mass fraction, and temperature distributions are unevenly... (More)

In this work, a three-dimensional, non-isothermal, steady-state model for high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells with phosphoric acid polybenzimidazole membrane has been developed using computational fluid dynamics. The importance of the gas flow field design on the transport characteristics and cell performance is revealed by solving the mass, momentum, species, energy, and charge conservation equations. The numerical results show that the best cell performance is provided by the fuel cell with serpentine flow channel flow field. However, the pressure drop is also very high due to the large length of the serpentine channel. In addition, the velocity, oxygen mass fraction, and temperature distributions are unevenly distributed over the entire active area of the fuel cell having straight channels with small manifolds, especially at low cell voltages when a large amount of oxygen is required. The cell performance and durability can be significantly affected by the uniformity of the reactants within the fuel cell. It is suggested that the flow field configurations must be optimized to obtain uniform distributions of the reactants, maximize the cell performance, and minimize the pressure drop penalty. The present results provide detailed information about transport characteristics within fuel cells and give guidelines for design and manufacturing of current collectors.

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author
organization
publishing date
type
Contribution to journal
publication status
published
subject
in
Numerical Heat Transfer; Part A: Applications
volume
72
issue
11
pages
807 - 820
publisher
Taylor & Francis
external identifiers
  • scopus:85038813066
ISSN
1040-7782
DOI
10.1080/10407782.2017.1412221
language
English
LU publication?
yes
id
cd9a795c-599c-4920-9b4b-c1d5c2201ff4
date added to LUP
2018-01-03 08:43:21
date last changed
2018-02-20 14:35:18
@article{cd9a795c-599c-4920-9b4b-c1d5c2201ff4,
  abstract     = {<p>In this work, a three-dimensional, non-isothermal, steady-state model for high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells with phosphoric acid polybenzimidazole membrane has been developed using computational fluid dynamics. The importance of the gas flow field design on the transport characteristics and cell performance is revealed by solving the mass, momentum, species, energy, and charge conservation equations. The numerical results show that the best cell performance is provided by the fuel cell with serpentine flow channel flow field. However, the pressure drop is also very high due to the large length of the serpentine channel. In addition, the velocity, oxygen mass fraction, and temperature distributions are unevenly distributed over the entire active area of the fuel cell having straight channels with small manifolds, especially at low cell voltages when a large amount of oxygen is required. The cell performance and durability can be significantly affected by the uniformity of the reactants within the fuel cell. It is suggested that the flow field configurations must be optimized to obtain uniform distributions of the reactants, maximize the cell performance, and minimize the pressure drop penalty. The present results provide detailed information about transport characteristics within fuel cells and give guidelines for design and manufacturing of current collectors.</p>},
  author       = {Li, Shian and Yuan, Jinliang and Xie, Gongnan and Sunden, Bengt},
  issn         = {1040-7782},
  language     = {eng},
  month        = {12},
  number       = {11},
  pages        = {807--820},
  publisher    = {Taylor & Francis},
  series       = {Numerical Heat Transfer; Part A: Applications},
  title        = {Numerical investigation of transport phenomena in high temperature proton exchange membrane fuel cells with different flow field designs},
  url          = {http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/10407782.2017.1412221},
  volume       = {72},
  year         = {2017},
}