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Mass Transfer Enhancement for Improving the Performance of Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells

[+] Author Affiliations
P. W. Li, U. Uysal, M. K. Chyu

University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA

Paper No. HT-FED2004-56217, pp. 87-92; 6 pages
  • ASME 2004 Heat Transfer/Fluids Engineering Summer Conference
  • Volume 3
  • Charlotte, North Carolina, USA, July 11–15, 2004
  • Conference Sponsors: Heat Transfer Division and Fluids Engineering Division
  • ISBN: 0-7918-4692-X | eISBN: 0-7918-3740-8
  • Copyright © 2004 by ASME


The significance of mass transfer enhancement in polymer electrolyte fuel cells (PEFC) is presented and studied in this work based on experimental investigation. A novel structure of reactant gas distributors in PEFC is proposed for mass transfer enhancement purpose. For the PEFC with novel gas distributors, it is found that the large drop of the cell voltage, generally caused by a weak mass diffusion, is postponed to occur at relatively higher current density even though the same or less amount of air is fed when comparing to a PEFC with gas distributors in conventional structure. As a result, the maximum obtained electrical power in a PEFC and a PEFC stack both are dramatically improved under both free convective and forced convective airflow conditions.

Copyright © 2004 by ASME



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