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Heat and Mass Transfer

, Volume 52, Issue 8, pp 1529–1540 | Cite as

Modeling of mass and charge transport in a solid oxide fuel cell anode structure by a 3D lattice Boltzmann approach

  • Hedvig Paradis
  • Martin Andersson
  • Bengt Sundén
Original

Abstract

A 3D model at microscale by the lattice Boltzmann method (LBM) is proposed for part of an anode of a solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) to analyze the interaction between the transport and reaction processes and structural parameters. The equations of charge, momentum, heat and mass transport are simulated in the model. The modeling geometry is created with randomly placed spheres to resemble the part of the anode structure close to the electrolyte. The electrochemical reaction processes are captured at specific sites where spheres representing Ni and YSZ materials are present with void space. This work focuses on analyzing the effect of structural parameters such as porosity, and percentage of active reaction sites on the ionic current density and concentration of H2 using LBM. It is shown that LBM can be used to simulate an SOFC anode at microscale and evaluate the effect of structural parameters on the transport processes to improve the performance of the SOFC anode. It was found that increasing the porosity from 30 to 50 % decreased the ionic current density due to a reduction in the number of reaction sites. Also the consumption of H2 decreased with increasing porosity. When the percentage of active reaction sites was increased while the porosity was kept constant, the ionic current density increased. However, the H2 concentration was slightly reduced when the percentage of active reaction sites was increased. The gas flow tortuosity decreased with increasing porosity.

Keywords

Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Lattice Boltzmann Method Ionic Current Density Knudsen Diffusion Porous Domain 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.

List of symbols

AV

Surface area to volume (m2/m3)

b

Particle distribution function, ion/electron transport

C

Concentration (mol/m3)

De

Effective diffusivity (m2/s)

Deff

Average effective diffusivity (m2/s)

DKeff

Effective Knudsen diffusivity (m2/s)

dp

Particle diameter (m)

e

Base velocity in the lattice Boltzmann model

E

Activation energy (kJ/mol)

E

Actual voltage (V)

Eeq

Equilibrium voltage (V)

f

Particle distribution function, momentum transport

F

Faraday’s constant (96,485 A s/mol)

g

Particle distribution function, mass transport

h

Particle distribution function, heat transport

i

Current density (A/m2)

L

Porous domain length (m)

M

Molecular weight (g/mol)

p

Pressure (atm)

Q

Heat flow (J/s)

R

Gas constant [8.3145 J/(mol K)]

Re

Reynolds number (–)

Rj

Reaction rate (mol/s)

S

Entropy (J/mol K)

T

Temperature (K)

t

Time (s)

u

Velocity vector (m/s)

u, v

Velocity (m/s)

x, y, z

Position (m)

Greek symbols

α

Lattice direction (–)

β

Transfer coefficient in the Butler–Volmer equation (–)

ε

Porosity (–)

η

Polarization (V)

ρ

Density (kg/m3)

σ

Conductivity (S/m) or characteristic length (Å)

τ

Relaxation time (–)

ν

Kinematic viscosity (m2/s)

ϕ

Electric potential (V)

Ω

Collision operator (–)

ΩD

Dimensionless collision integral (–)

Abbreviations

BGK

Bhatnagar, Gross, Krook (method, collision operator)

CFD

Computational fluid dynamics

FEM

Finite element method

FDM

Finite difference method

FIB

Focused ion beam

FVM

Finite volume method

LBM

Lattice Boltzmann method

PDF

Particle distribution function

SEM

Scanning electron microscopy

SOFC

Solid oxide fuel cell

TPB

Three-phase boundary

YSZ

Yttria-stabilized zirconia

Chemical formula

H2

Hydrogen

H2O

Water

Ni

Nickel

O2

Oxygen

O2−

Oxygen ions

Subscripts

act

Activation

conc

Concentration

e

Electronic, electrochemical

io

Ionic

j

Species index

k

Species index

ohm

Ohmic

r

Reaction

Notes

Acknowledgments

The Swedish Research Council (VR-621-2010-4581) and the European Research Council (ERC-226238-MMFCs) are gratefully acknowledged for the financial support of this research work. Also, the authors want to acknowledge the Swedish National Infrastructure for Computing (SNIC) for the use of the computer cluster Lunarc.

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  • Hedvig Paradis
    • 1
  • Martin Andersson
    • 1
  • Bengt Sundén
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Energy Sciences, Faculty of EngineeringLund UniversityLundSweden

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