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A Model for 1D Multicomponent Gas Transport in the Gas Diffusion Layer of the Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell

Abstract:

One of the most promising emerging green energy technologies is the proton exchange membrane fuel cell, an electrochemical energy conversion device that converts hydrogen and oxygen into electricity and heat. In this device, a mixture of gases, including hydrogen, is introduced to a catalyst via a semi-permeable gas diffusion layer (GDL). The efficiency of the fuel cell is in part governed by the composition of the GDL and the composition of the gas mixture. In this report, we motivate the problem and discuss a one-dimensional mathematical model of the multicomponent gas transport across the GDL suggested by Stockie in [5], consisting of coupled parabolic partial differential equations and some separated boundary conditions. We solve these equations with BACOL, a high-order adaptive method of lines package based on B-spline collocation. We compare our results with those obtained by Stockie [5] and discuss future work.

Author: Greg Lukeman

Advisor: Raymond J. Spiteri

Download: math5285_project_fuelcell