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Modern Fuel Cell Testing Laboratory

  • Jean St-Pierre
  • Michael Angelo
  • Keith Bethune
  • Jack Huizingh
  • Tatyana Reshetenko
  • Mebs Virji
  • Yunfeng Zhai
Part of the Springer Handbooks book series (SHB)

Abstract

Elements constituting a fuel cell laboratory are succinctly discussed using the experience developed at the Hawaii Sustainable Energy Research Facility. The information is expected to be useful to organizations with a desire to create or improve a fuel cell laboratory in view of the recent and anticipated fuel cell commercialization activities. Topics discussed cover a wide range with an emphasis on differentiating aspects from other types of laboratories including safety, fuel cell and test equipment, and methods used to characterize fuel cells. The use of hydrogen, oxygen and specifically introduced chemical species, and the presence of high voltages and electrical short risks constitute the most prominent hazards. Reactant purity, cleaning, test station control including data acquisition, and calibration are the most important considerations to ensure fuel cell characterization data quality. Cleanliness is also an important consideration for the fuel cell assembly and integration into the test station. The fuel cell assembly also needs to be verified for faults. Fuel cells need to be conditioned for optimum performance before a purposefully designed test plan is implemented. Many fuel cell diagnostic methods are available but novel techniques are still needed in many areas including through plane temperature distribution, stack diagnostics and mass transfer properties. The emphasis is given to commonly and sparingly used electrochemical techniques. In situ techniques include polarization, impedance spectroscopy, voltammetry and current distribution over the active area. Ex situ techniques include the rotating ring-disc electrode and the membrane conductivity cell. Other nonelectrochemical techniques are also useful to understand fuel cell behavior and include the analysis of reactant streams and condensed water, and spectroscopic measurements in combination with electrochemical cells (spectroelectrochemical cells).

Keywords

Fuel Cell Oxygen Reduction Reaction Bipolar Plate Fuel Cell Performance Fuel Cell Technology 
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.
AFM

atomic force microscopy

ASTMI

American Society for Testing and Materials International

BP

bypass

CCM

catalyst coated membrane

CE

counter electrode

CPE

constant phase element

CV

cyclic voltammetry

DSC

differential scanning calorimetry

ECSA

electrochemical active surface area

EDAX/EDS

energy dispersive x-ray analysis spectrometer

EEC

equivalent electrical circuit

EIS

electrochemical impedance spectroscopy

ESEM

environmental scanning electron microscopy

EXAFS

extended x-ray absorption fine structure

FC

fuel cell

FRA

frequency response analyzer

FTIR

Fourier-transform infrared

GDE

gas diffusion electrode

GDL

gas diffusion layer

HOR

hydrogen oxidation reaction

LSV

linear sweep voltammetry

LT

low temperature

MEA

membrane–electrode assembly

MIP

mercury intrusion porosimetry

MSDS

material safety data sheet

OCV

open circuit voltage

ORR

oxygen reduction reaction

PEMFC

proton-exchange membrane fuel cell

REDD

x-ray radial electron density distribution

RE

reference electrode

RRDE

rotating ring-disc electrode

SAXS

small angle x-ray scattering

SEM

scanning electron microscopy

SOFC

solid oxide fuel cell

STM

scanning tunneling microscopy

TEM

transmission electron microscopy

TGA

thermogravimetric analysis

WDS

wavelength dispersive x-ray spectrometer

WE

working electrode

XANES

x-ray absorption near-edge spectroscopy

XPS

x-ray photoelectron spectroscopy

XRD

x-ray diffraction

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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Jean St-Pierre
    • 1
  • Michael Angelo
    • 1
  • Keith Bethune
    • 1
  • Jack Huizingh
    • 1
  • Tatyana Reshetenko
    • 1
  • Mebs Virji
    • 1
  • Yunfeng Zhai
    • 1
  1. 1.Hawaii Sustainable Energy Research Facility, Hawaii Natural Energy Inst.University of Hawaii – ManoaHonoluluUSA

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