Experimental investigation of a passive direct ethanol fuel cell
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Experimental investigation of a passive direct ethanol fuel cell (DEFC) is presented in this work. A passive DEFC of active area 25 cm2 with Nafion 115 membrane is developed and tested. Effect of several parameters such as ethanol feed concentration, ambient temperature, bolt torque, and operating orientation on the cell performance is investigated. It is found that all these parameters significantly affect the cell performance. The cell performance improves with initial increase in the ethanol feed concentration, reaches to a maximum, and then decreases on further increasing the ethanol feed concentration. A similar trend in the cell performance is observed on increasing the ambient temperature and on increasing the bolt torque too. In this study, the maximum cell performance is observed with 4 M ethanol feed concentration, 60 °C of ambient temperature, and 7 Nm of bolt torque. Cell orientation too affects the cell performance. Horizontal cell orientation is proved to deliver better cell performance compared to vertical orientation. This study depicts that an improved DEFC performance can be obtained by carefully selecting working parameters.
KeywordsPassive direct ethanol fuel cell Ethanol concentration Temperature Torque Orientation