A full three-dimensional, non-isothermal computational fluid dynamics model of a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) with both the gas distribution flow channels and the membrane electrode assembly (MEA) has been developed. A single set of conservation equations which are valid for the flow channels, gas-diffusion electrodes, catalyst layers, and the membrane region are developed and numerically solved using a finite volume based computational fluid dynamics technique. In this research some parameters such as Oxygen consumption and fuel cell performance according to the variation of porosity, thickness of gas diffusion layer, and the effect of the boundary conditions were investigated in more details. Numerical results shown that the higher values of gas diffusion layer porosity improve the mass transport within the cell, and this leads to reduce the mass transport loss. The gas diffusion layer thickness affects the fuel cell mass transport. A thinner gas diffusion layer increases the mass transport, and consequently the performance of the fuel cell. Furthermore, the study of boundary conditions effects showed that by insulating the bipolar surfaces, hydrogen and oxygen consumption at the anode and cathode sides increase; so that the fuel cell performance would be optimized. Finally the numerical results of proposed CFD model are compared with the available experimental data that represent good agreement.
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This paper was recommended for publication in revised form by Associate Editor Yong-Tae Kim
Nader Pourmahmoud was born in 1969 in Oshnavieh city in Iran. He received BS degree in Mechanical Engineering in Shiraz University in 1992. After achieving some of practical engineering projects till 1997 he started Msc. degree in mechanical engineering (energy conversion field) in Tarbiat Modarres University in Tehran and finally he received his Ph.D degree in mechanical engineering (energy conversion field) in 2003 at the same university in Iran. He is an assistance professor in the mechanical engineering department at faculty of engineering of Urmia University. His professional interests are in the field of CFD of Turbulent fluid flow, energy conversion problems and especially in fabricating of specific Vortex Tube.
Sajad Rezazadeh was born in Urmia in1984. He passed entrance exam of Technical University of Urmia in mechanical course in 2002. Immediately after finishing B.S, he accepted in Master Degree of the same course (Energy conversion tendency). He finished his M.S with thesis about computational fluid dynamics modeling of proton exchange membrane fuel cell. During that year he accepted in Ph.D and now he is in second year of his Ph.D studying. During this nearly 8 years, He has presented several articles in internal and international seminars about main mechanical topics such as fuel cells and heat exchangers.
Iraj Mirzaee was born in 1960 in Ahar city in Iran. He received BS degree in Mechanical Engineering in Mashhad University in 1986. He started Msc. degree in mechanical engineering (energy conversion field) in Esfehan University in Iran and finally he received his Ph.D degree in mechanical engineering (energy conversion field) in 1997 at the Bath University in England. He is an associated professor in the mechanical engineering department at faculty of engineering of Urmia University. His professional interests are in the field of CFD, turbulent, fluid flow, energy conversion problems and turbine gas.
Vahid Heidarpour was born in 1980 in Salmas city in Iran. He received Bs degree and Msc degree in Mechanical Engineering of Bu Ali Sina and Urmia University, Iran, respectively in 2004 and 2008. During that year he accepted in Ph.D degree and now he is in second year of his Ph.D studying. His interest in research is in the field of CFD and heat transfer and rotating systems.
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Pourmahmoud, N., Rezazadeh, S., Mirzaee, I. et al. Three-dimensional numerical analysis of proton exchange membrane fuel cell. J Mech Sci Technol 25, 2665–2673 (2011). https://doi.org/10.1007/s12206-011-0743-y
- Gas diffusion layer
- CFD modeling