Research Papers

Fluid Dynamic Investigation of Channel Design in High Temperature PEM Fuel Cells

[+] Author and Article Information
G. Falcucci1

 Department of Technologies,University of Naples “Parthenope,”Centro Direzionale - Isola C4, 80143 Naples, Italygiacomo.falcucci@uniparthenope.it

E. Jannelli, M. Minutillo, S. Ubertini

 Department of Technologies,University of Naples “Parthenope,”Centro Direzionale - Isola C4, 80143 Naples, Italy


Corresponding author.

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 9(2), 021014 (Mar 19, 2012) (10 pages) doi:10.1115/1.4005628 History: Received September 26, 2011; Revised November 12, 2011; Accepted November 30, 2011; Published March 09, 2012; Online March 19, 2012

In this paper we analyze the three-dimensional flow field in anode and cathode gas channels of polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells operating at high temperature (T >100 °C). Different gas flow channel designs (pin-type, parallel channels, comb-tipe and multiple serpentine), as well as different channel sections (squared, trapezoidal and rounded with different curvature radii) are evaluated in function of some relevant parameters. The analysis is performed accounting for overall pressure losses, gas distribution over the electrode area and residence time with focus on channel hydraulic diameter, active surface ratio, gas path. Differences with low temperature (LT) PEM fuel cell design are also adressed. The investigation is conducted by means of 3D-CFD softwares and the results of our simulations are compared to experimental data in literature.

Copyright © 2012 by American Society of Mechanical Engineers
Your Session has timed out. Please sign back in to continue.



Grahic Jump Location
Figure 6

Comparison between two serpentine layouts

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 7

Residence time inside the two serpentine layouts reported in Fig. 6: average, mimimum and maximum value

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 8

Pressure losses (Pa) inside the two serpentine layouts reported in Fig. 6

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 9

Sketch of the tested juction radii

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 10

Pressure losses (Pa) as due to different values of inner junction radious: left, Rj = 1.1 mm; right, Rj = 0.2 mm

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 11

CAD of serpentine-type cathode serpentine with trapezoidal cross section

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 12

Relative total pressure [Pa] in the serpentine-type cathode compartment with trapezoidal cross section

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 13

Two curved channel sections: (a) weakly curved, (b) strongly curved

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 1

Different cathode channel layouts: (a), (b) and (c) are taken from [18]; (a) is the pin-type layout; (b) the channel configuration; (c) is the comb-type cathode pattern and (d) is the serpentine design

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 2

Contours of relative total pressure [Pa], according to the different channel designs

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 3

Bar graph of pressure losses in the different geometries of Fig. 1: present results (blue) and literature data (red) from Ref. [18]

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 4

Residence times for the different gas channel layouts reported in Fig. 1: average, mimimum and maximum value. The serpentine layout shows the most isotropic fluid dynamic filed.

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 5

Velocity magnitude (m/s) inside the different cathode compartments. It is evident how the serpentine layout, (d), is characterized by the most uniform fluid dynamic field.

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 16

Comparison between HT PEM channel layout (a) and LT PEM channels (b)

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 17

Different pressure loss according to different grid spacing for working conditions in Tables  118

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 14

Sketch of the two curved sections considered in this work

Grahic Jump Location
Figure 15

Pressure losses in the cathode compartment characterized by curved sections: left, weakly curved channels; right, strongly curved channels



Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging and repositioning the boxes below.

Related Journal Articles
Related eBook Content
Topic Collections

Sorry! You do not have access to this content. For assistance or to subscribe, please contact us:

  • TELEPHONE: 1-800-843-2763 (Toll-free in the USA)
  • EMAIL: asmedigitalcollection@asme.org
Sign In