Modelling and simulation of Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cell with serpentine bipolar plate using MATLAB

Tabbi Wilberforce, Zaki El-Hassan*, F. N. Khatib, Ahmed Al Makky, Ahmad Baroutaji, James G. Carton, James Thompson, Abdul G. Olabi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


This report presents experimental results derived from a Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cell with a serpentine flow plate design. The investigation seeks to explore the effects of some parameters like cell operational temperature, humidification and atmospheric pressure on the general performance and efficiency of PEM fuel cell using MATLAB. A number of codes were written to generate the polarization curve for a single stack and five (5) cell stack fuel cell at various operating conditions. Detailed information of hydrogen and oxygen consumption and the effect they have on the fuel cell performance were critically analysed. The investigation concluded that the open circuit voltage generated was less than the theoretical voltage predicted in the literature. It was also noticed that an increase in current or current density reduced the voltage derived from the fuel cell stack. The experiment also clearly confirmed that when more current is being drawn from the fuel cell, more water will also be generated at the cathode section of the cell hence the need for an effective water management to improve the performance of the fuel cell. Other parameters like the stack efficiency and power density were also analysed using the experimental results obtained.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)25639-25662
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number40
Publication statusPublished - 5 Oct 2017


  • Current
  • PEM fuel cell
  • Polarization curve
  • Voltage


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