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A CFD ANALYSIS ON THE EFFECT OF AMBIENT CONDITIONS ON THE TEMPERATURE DISTRIBUTION IN A TUBULAR-SHAPED AMBIENT AIR-BREATHING PEM MICRO FUEL CELL

DOI: 10.1615/ICHMT.2009.CONV.680
13 pages

Maher A.R. Sadiq Al-Baghdadi
Mechanical & Energy Department, Higher Institute of Mechanical Engineering, Yefren, P.O. Box 65943, Libya

Abstrakt

Three-dimensional, multi-phase, non-isothermal CFD model of a tubular air-breathing PEM micro fuel cell which work in still or slowly moving air has been developed. The tubular geometry enables optimum air access to the cathode without the need for pumps, fans or similar devices. This comprehensive model account for the major transport phenomena in a tubular-shaped air-breathing PEM micro fuel cell: convective and diffusive heat and mass transfer, electrode kinetics, transport and phase-change mechanism of water, and potential fields. The model is shown to understand the many interacting, complex electrochemical, and transport phenomena that cannot be studied experimentally. In addition to the new and complex geometry, this model is used to study the effects of ambient conditions on the temperature distribution inside the cell. The study helped identifying critical parameters and shed insight into the physical mechanisms leading to a fuel cell performance and durability under various ambient conditions. The results showed that the ambient conditions (ambient temperature and relative humidity) have a strong impact on the temperature distribution inside the cell.

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