Performance Modeling of a H2-Fueled Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell
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To assist in the development of an integrated proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) system, a 2-D fuel cell model has been developed and integrated with supporting zero-D models. The fuel cell model employs a finite-volume discretization of the conservation equations in the gas-phase flow channels, for the gas diffusion layer, and at the electrocatalyst electrolyte interface. The resulting conservation equations are converted into a DAE form for transient integration within MATLAB. The model employs detailed surface thermochemistry within CANTERA for the catalyst and electrolyte surfaces. In this study, the model was used to investigate the isothermal performance of the fuel cell and to assess how steady-state overpotentials depend on operating conditions. These results were validated against existing data supplied by Ballard Power Systems. After validation, the Ballard stack parameters were used in transient integration to evaluate how the fuel cell responds to rapid changes in load and flow conditions.