Performance Analysis of Polymer Electrolyte Membrane (PEM) Fuel Cell Stack Operated under Marine Environmental Conditions

The marine environmental condition, especially NaCl, has been identified as one of the major sources of contamination on the performance of open cathode Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cells (PEMFC) system, when the power source is based on fuel cells for marine applications like submarines, navy ships etc., In the present paper, we have studied the performance of PEMFCs under the marine environment for a longer duration and also the recovery mechanism of the PEMFC power pack after contamination. It has been observed that the NaCl is a major contaminant for PEMFC, compared to NOₓ and SOₓ, which are major contaminants for fuel cells operating in the land regions. The authors have observed a performance loss of 60 % in PEMFC, when operated for 48 h, due to poisoning of PEMFC by NaCl vapours. The recovery of the stack is attempted by repeated water washing on the cathode side of the fuel cell, presuming that the salts get deposited only on the surface of the electrodes and the performance is easily recoverable. The recovery mechanisms are analysed by constant-current discharging operation and by modified experimental methods and are reported here. The performance vagaries in fuel cells due to sea water contamination is also analysed by linear fit and it is found that the rate of power increment after water wash is higher than the rate of power increment, around 11.5 W/10 h compared to normal environmental conditions, which is 4.1 W/10 h.

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  • English

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  • Accession Number: 01608284
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS
  • Created Date: Aug 26 2016 9:09AM