Fuel Cell Stack Cooling

Application ID: 105191

This tutorial models the thermal management of a polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cell stack. Operating the stack with a similar temperature profile for all cells is important since an uneven temperature distribution may otherwise result in nonuniform water vapor condensation and a large cell-to-cell variation in performance.

The stack consists of five cells, interlayered with bipolar plates that carry the liquid cooling fluid. The model solves for the temperature, the electrode and electrolyte phase potentials, the mass transport of the reacting species in each separate gas compartment, and the fluid pressures and corresponding velocities in the gas and liquid flow compartments.

The flow channels of the bipolar plates are not resolved explicitly in the geometry. Instead anisotropic permeabilities are used define the fluid flow patterns inside the stack.

This model example illustrates applications of this type that would nominally be built using the following products: