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Hydrogen Fuel Cell Integration and Testing in a Hybrid-electric Propulsion Rig


On the road towards greener aviation, hybrid-electric propulsion systems have emerged as a viable solution. In this paper, a system based on hydrogen fuel cells is proposed and evaluated in a laboratory setting with its future integration in a propulsive system in mind and main focus on the ability to lessen the power demand on the opposing side of the bench. The setup consists in a parallel architecture with two power sources: a hydrogen fuel cell and a battery. First, the performance of the fuel cell and its capability to provide power to one of the motors are analyzed. Then, the entire parallel hybrid system is evaluated. Although the experimental setup was shown to be sub-optimal, the results demonstrated the ability of this greener alternative to reduce power demand on the opposing side of the parallel configuration, with a reduction of up to 40.3% in the highest load scenario, and maximum power output on the fuel cell of 257.8 W. The stack performance was also concluded to be very dependent on the operating temperature.

Funding source: F.A. and A.S. acknowledge Fundac¸ao para a Ci ~ encia e a Tec- ^ nologia (FCT), through IDMEC, under LAETA, project UIDB/ 50022/2020. A.S. also acknowledges the NSERC Canada Research Chair funding program.
Related subjects: Applications & Pathways
Countries: Canada ; Portugal

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