A basic model of hydrogen circulation in a proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell



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Texas Tech University


The fuel cell has come a long way since Sir Hubert Davy built the first prototype in 1801. After a slow 150 years, the fuel cell came to the attention of the world with the first slew of fuel cell operated vehicles in the 1950's. The next decade saw fuel cells used in NASA's Gemini and Apollo space missions. The 1990's have seen fuel cells in power plants, city busses, and space shuttle missions. Currently, $1 billion has been invested worldwide to investigate fuel cell operated vehicles as an alternate to Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) operated vehicles. With fuel cell efficiencies nearing 50%, low emissions and better reliability, fuel cell research is at an all-time high. This research will investigate the performance of the hydrogen circulation system of a Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cell specifically designed for a hybrid vehicle. System parameters will be analyzed to find the optimum operating conditions for the hydrogen circulation system.



Ion exchange, Motor fuels, Hydrogen as fuel, Fuel cells, Ion-permeable membranes