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Numerical Analysis of Liquid Water Droplets Removal in Gas Channels of a PEM Fuel Cell

[+] Author Affiliations
Chin-Hsiang Cheng, Wei-Shan Han

National Cheng-Kung University, Tainan, Taiwan

Chun-I Lee, Huan-Ruei Shiu, Ssu-Tai Lin

Industrial Technology Research Institute, Hsinchu, Taiwan

Paper No. IMECE2010-39672, pp. 945-953; 9 pages
  • ASME 2010 International Mechanical Engineering Congress and Exposition
  • Volume 5: Energy Systems Analysis, Thermodynamics and Sustainability; NanoEngineering for Energy; Engineering to Address Climate Change, Parts A and B
  • Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, November 12–18, 2010
  • Conference Sponsors: ASME
  • ISBN: 978-0-7918-4429-8
  • Copyright © 2010 by ASME


The present study is concerned with the dynamic behavior of the liquid water droplets in the water removal process in the serpentine channels of a PEM fuel cell based on computational fluid dynamic (CFD) simulation. The volume of fluid (VOF) model is adopted to trace the interface between the liquid and the gas phases such that the motion of the liquid droplets can be observed. Effects of the incoming velocity are evaluated. In addition, the surface hydrophobic properties are influential to the droplets motion; therefore, the contact angle of the liquid droplet attached on the channel wall has been varied. In addition, the orientation of the bipolar plate is regarded as another important parameter in the present study. Results show that among these parameters considered, the incoming flow velocity and the contact angle are two key parameters which greatly affect the dynamic behavior of the liquid droplets. The liquid droplets attached on the wall of the bipolar plate can be removed by the gas flow only when the contact angle or the incoming flow velocity is sufficiently high.

Copyright © 2010 by ASME



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