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Microscopic Observations of Freezing Phenomena in PEM Fuel Cells at Cold Starts

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Title: Microscopic Observations of Freezing Phenomena in PEM Fuel Cells at Cold Starts
Authors: Chikahisa, Takemi Browse this author →KAKEN DB
Issue Date: 4-Oct-2012
Publisher: Taylor & Francis
Journal Title: Heat Transfer Engineering
Volume: 34
Issue: 2-3
Start Page: 258
End Page: 265
Publisher DOI: 10.1080/01457632.2013.703579
Abstract: In Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs), the generated water transfers from the catalyst layer to the gas channel through micro channels of different scales in a two phase flow. It is important to know details of the water transport phenomena to realize better cell performance, as the water causes flooding at high current density conditions and give rise to startup problems at freezing temperatures. This paper here, which was originally written for the keynote speech in the ICNMM conference in 2011, presents specifics of the ice formation characteristics in the catalyst layer and in the gas diffusion layer (GDL) with photos taken with an optical microscope and a CRYO-SEM. The observation results show that cold starts at -10℃ results in ice formation at the interface between the catalyst layer and the micro porous layer (MPL) of the GDL, and that at -20℃ most of the ice is formed in the catalyst layer. Water transport phenomena through the micro porous layer and GDL are also a matter of interest, because the role of the MPL is not well understood from the water management angle. The paper discusses the difference in the water distribution at the interface between the catalyst layer and the GDL arising from the presence of such a micro porous layer.
Rights: This is an Author's Accepted Manuscript of an article published in Heat Transfer Engineering, Volume 34, Issue 2-3, pages 258-265, 2012, Copyright © 2012 Taylor & Francis, available online at:
Type: article (author version)
Appears in Collections:工学院・工学研究院 (Graduate School of Engineering / Faculty of Engineering) > 雑誌発表論文等 (Peer-reviewed Journal Articles, etc)

Submitter: 近久 武美

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