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PEFC System Reactant Gas Supply Management and Anode Purging Strategy: An Experimental Approach


In this report, a 5 kW PEFC system running on dry hydrogen with an appropriately sized Balance of Plant (BoP) was used to conduct experimental studies and analyses of gas supply subsystems. The improper rating and use of BoP components has been found to increase parasitic loads, which consequently has a direct effect on the polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC) system efficiency. Therefore, the minimisation of parasitic loads while maintaining desired performance is crucial. Nevertheless, little has been found in the literature regarding experimental work on large stacks and BoP, with the majority of papers concentrating on modelling. A particular interest of our study was the anode side of the fuel cell. Additionally the rationale behind the use of hydrogen anode recirculation was scrutinised, and a novel anode purging strategy was developed and implemented. Through experimental modelling, the use of cathode air blower was minimised since it was found to be the biggest contributor to the parasitic loads.

Funding source: This research was funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (UK), under grant number EP/L006707/1. This support is gratefully acknowledged
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: United Kingdom

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