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research-article

Numerical modeling of polymer electrolyte fuel cells with analytical and experimental validation

[+] Author and Article Information
Shidong Zhang

Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, IEK-3: Electrochemical Process Engineering, Jülich 52425, Germany
s.zhang@fz-juelich.de

Uwe Reimer

Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, IEK-3: Electrochemical Process Engineering, Jülich 52425, Germany
u.reimer@fz-juelich.de

Yasser Rahim

Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, IEK-3: Electrochemical Process Engineering, Jülich 52425, Germany
y.rahim@fz-juelich.de

Steven Beale

Fellow ASME, Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, IEK-3: Electrochemical Process Engineering, Jülich 52425, Germany, Mechanical and Materials Engineering, Queen's University, Kingston, ON K7 L 3N6, Canada
s.beale@fz-juelich.de

Werner Lehnert

Forschungszentrum Jülich GmbH, IEK-3: Electrochemical Process Engineering, Jülich 52425, Germany, Modeling in Electrochemical Process Engineering, RWTH Aachen University, Aachen 52056, Germany, JARA-HPC, Jülich 52425, Germany
w.lehnert@fz-juelich.de

1Corresponding author.

ASME doi:10.1115/1.4042063 History: Received August 15, 2018; Revised November 12, 2018

Abstract

A computational fluid dynamics model for high-temperature polymer electrolyte fuel cells is developed. This allows for three-dimensional transport-coupled calculations to be conducted. All major transport phenomena and electrochemical processes are taken into consideration. Verification of the present model is achieved by comparison with current density and oxygen concentration distributions along a one-dimensional channel. Validation is achieved by comparison with polarization curves from experimental data gathered in-house. Deviations between experimental and numerical results are minor. Internal transport phenomena are also analyzed. Local variations of current density from under channel regions and under rib regions are displayed, as are oxygen mole fractions. The serpentine type gas channels flow configurations contributes positively to gas redistribution in the gas diffusion layers and channels.

Copyright (c) 2018 by ASME
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