Performance evaluation of an air breathing polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell in harsh environments – A case study under Saudi Arabia's ambient condition

A. Al-Anazi, Tabbi Wilberforce*, F. N. Khatib, P. Vichare, A. G. Olabi

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

A key parameter that determines the efficiency of proton exchange membrane fuel cells is their operating conditions. Optimization of various components in these fuel cells is pivotal in improving cell performance, as their performance is directly related to the operational conditions the cells are subjected to. This investigation examined the viability of an air breathing fuel cell subjected to ambient conditions in Riyadh in Saudi Arabia. A validated three-dimensional air breathing 5-cell stack, modelled in ANSYS was utilised to generate the results. Furthermore, the work also considered the feasibility of deploying a humidifier unit for the hydrogen inlet, so as to ascertain the physical behaviour of the PEMFC stack. It was observed that the performance of the stack reaches its peak during the summer time (June–August), and hydrogen humidification improves output performance by 40%.

Original languageEnglish
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Early online date24 Nov 2020
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 24 Nov 2020

Keywords

  • Computational fluid dynamics
  • Fuel cell
  • Optimization
  • Saudi Arabia

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