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Technical Briefs

A Degradation Measurement System for Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells Using a Dead-Ended Passive Stack and Time-Varying Load

[+] Author and Article Information
Noboru Katayama

Department of Electrical Engineering, Tokyo University of Science, 2641 Yamazaki, Noda, Chiba, 278-8510, Japankatayama@nov.rikadai.jp

Sumio Kogoshi

Department of Electrical Engineering, Tokyo University of Science, 2641 Yamazaki, Noda, Chiba, 278-8510, Japankogoshi@ee.noda.tus.ac.jp

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 8(3), 034501 (Feb 15, 2011) (3 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4003014 History: Received January 13, 2010; Revised November 01, 2010; Published February 15, 2011; Online February 15, 2011

A degradation measurement system has been developed for polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells to reveal the relationship between degradation rates and electric load variations. The system involves a dead-ended stack of 10 single cells and an electronic load device that functions as a time-varying load to each cell of the stack. Use of a stack enables the temperatures of the cells to be kept almost the same and the supplied gas conditions to be constant. Experiments were conducted to evaluate the feasibility of this test system. The polarization curves of the multiple cells were simultaneously measured, and the load of each cell in the stack can be individually controlled. Therefore, this system could be applied to reduce the time and cost in measuring the degradation and lifespan of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells.

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Copyright © 2011 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
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Figures

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Figure 1

Dead-ended test stack

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Figure 2

Electronic device developed for application of various loads to individual cells

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Figure 3

Circuit diagram of an individual electronic load

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Figure 4

Schematic diagram of the experimental setup

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Figure 5

Polarization curves for cells 1–5

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Figure 6

Polarization curves for cells 6–10

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Figure 7

Comparison between the polarization curve measured simultaneously for cell 7 and that measured individually

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Figure 8

Time evolution of the load patterns and cell voltages for cells 1, 4, 7, and 10

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