In this work two models of the air-cathode of a PEM fuel cell are proposed using a two-phase non-equilibrium approach. The novelty of both models is that they use experimentally determined porosity, capillary pressure relationships, and permeability of the gas diffusion material in order to demonstrate whether or not the use of these properties enhances the accuracy of PEM fuel cell models to predict performance curves and liquid water saturation distribution. The first model is a 1-D model, where the effect of using experimental water transport properties of the GDL is assessed in terms of water saturation distribution in the GDL. The second model is a 2-D model used to predict experimental polarization curves. It was found that the implementation of the experimentally determined water transport characteristics of the GDL predicts more liquid water saturation than using empirical correlations for the capillary pressure curves and permeability. It was also observed that polarization curves of two cells using different GDL material can be predicted accurately using the appropriate GDL properties.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
- Energy Engineering and Power Technology
- Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering