Research Papers

Performance Improvement for Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell Using Hydrogen Pressure Pulsation Approach

[+] Author and Article Information
Qiuhong Jia

School of Mechanical Engineering,
Southwest Jiaotong University,
Chengdu 610031, China;
School of Mechanical Engineering,
Chongqing University of Technology,
Chongqing 400054, China
e-mail: jiaqh@cqut.edu.cn

Caizhi Zhang

School of Mechanical
and Aerospace Engineering,
Nanyang Technological University,
50 Nanyang Avenue,
Singapore 639798, Singapore
e-mail: M110050@e.ntu.edu.sg

Bin Deng

School of Mechanical Engineering,
Southwest Jiaotong University,
Chengdu 610031, China
e-mail: 443121878@qq.com

Ming Han

Clean Energy Center,
Temasek Engineering School,
Temasek Polytechnic,
Singapore 529757, Singapore
e-mail: minghan@tp.edu.sg

1Corresponding authors.

Contributed by the Advanced Energy Systems Division of ASME for publication in the JOURNAL OF FUEL CELL SCIENCE AND TECHNOLOGY. Manuscript received November 27, 2013; final manuscript received August 28, 2015; published online September 18, 2015. Editor: Wilson K. S. Chiu.

J. Fuel Cell Sci. Technol 12(4), 041008 (Sep 18, 2015) (6 pages) Paper No: FC-13-1114; doi: 10.1115/1.4031525 History: Received November 27, 2013; Revised August 28, 2015

In a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC), the hydrogen feed into the anode in a periodical pressure swing, so-called hydrogen pressure pulsation feed (HPPF), significantly affects the transport phenomena of hydrogen and water in the anode flow field. HPPF could adjust the distribution of the back diffusion water and the hydrogen partial pressure along the anode flow channels, improve hydrogen mass transfer in the anode flow field, and enhance the diffusion of hydrogen in the porous medium (anode diffusion layer). On the other hand, HPPF technique could mitigate the anode flooding issue caused by water back diffusion from the cathode, improve the fuel cell performance. In this work, the principle of HPPF technique was introduced and analyzed by a mathematic approach. Some of the important parameters used in HPPF technique, such as amplitude of pulsation pressure, pulsating frequency, etc., were experimentally investigated on dead-end mode PEMFC stack. The experimental results showed that the amplitude of pressure pulsation, pulsating frequency, and position applied for HPPF highly affected the performance of the PEMFC stack. It can be seen that higher the frequency and/or amplitude of pressure pulsation, the better the performance of PEMFC stack.

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Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 5

Current density profiles with different hydrogen pulsation amplitude

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 1

Schematic diagram of the experimental system

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 4

Current density curves with different pulsating frequency

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 3

Current density with PH exerted to different locations

Grahic Jump Location
Fig. 2

Current density with pulsation hydrogen and without pulsation hydrogen



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