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Energies 2009, 2(3), 582-594; doi:10.3390/en20300582

A Simulation Tool for Geometrical Analysis and Optimization of Fuel Cell Bipolar Plates: Development, Validation and Results

Department of Energy Engineering, University of Seville, Camino de los Descubrimientos s/n 41092 Seville, Spain
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Received: 1 July 2009 / Revised: 16 July 2009 / Accepted: 29 July 2009 / Published: 31 July 2009
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Fuel Cells)
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Abstract

Bipolar plates (BPs) are one of the most important components in Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC) due to the numerous functions they perform. The objective of the research work described in this paper was to develop a simplified and validated method based on Computational Fluid Dynamics (CFD), aimed at the analysis and study of the influence of geometrical parameters of BPs on the operation of a cell. A complete sensibility analysis of the influence of dimensions and shape of the BP can be obtained through a simplified CFD model without including the complexity of other components of the PEMFC. This model is compared with the PEM Fuel Cell Module of the FLUENT software, which includes the physical and chemical phenomena relevant in PEMFCs. Results with both models regarding the flow field inside the channels and local current densities are obtained and compared. The results show that it is possible to use the simple model as a standard tool for geometrical analysis of BPs, and results of a sensitivity analysis using the simplified model are presented and discussed.
Keywords: fuel cell; simulation tool; bipolar plate; computational fluid dynamics fuel cell; simulation tool; bipolar plate; computational fluid dynamics
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MDPI and ACS Style

Iranzo, A.; Rosa, F.; Pino, J. A Simulation Tool for Geometrical Analysis and Optimization of Fuel Cell Bipolar Plates: Development, Validation and Results. Energies 2009, 2, 582-594.

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