Hierarchical Modeling of Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells

J. Dujc[1], J.O. Schumacher[1]
[1]Zurich University of Applied Sciences (ZHAW), Institute of Computational Physics (ICP), Winterthur, Switzerland

A finite element model of a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) is described in this paper. We divide the PEMFC into two separate and parallel 2D regions which are connected by the 1D regions representing the membrane electrode assembly (MEA). COMSOL Multiphysics® was used as a development tool for hierarchical 1D MEA models. Here we present a 1D model that is based on seven governing equations describing the transport of the charges, heat, dissolved water, water vapor, hydrogen and oxygen. Extension of this model includes also the eight equation corresponding to the liquid water phase. Along with the description of the 1D models, the coupling procedure between the 1D domains and 2D domains is presented. Preliminary results of our simulations are also given.