Carnegie Mellon University
October 14, 2010

Siefert and Prof. Litster Publish on Voltage Fluctuations

TPES members Nick Siefert and Prof. Shawn Litster successfully published in this month's Journal of Power Sources regarding voltage fluctuations during PEM fuel cell operation. Titled "Voltage loss and fluctuation in proton exchange membrane fuel cells: The role of cathode channel plurality and air stoichiometric ratio," this paper investigates fluctuations in performance that are caused by time-varying liquid water flooding in PEM fuel cell flow channels.

The way in which liquid water builds up and is forced out of flow channels depends on the channel configuration and the air stoichiometric ratio, the paper explains. The transient presence of water can cause local drops in reactant concentration, resulting in varying performance over time.

In studying the effect of both channel plurality and air stoichiometric ratio on this fluctuation, Siefert and Litster hope to improve understanding and guide the optimization of flow configurations to best integrate PEM fuel cells into systems.

The paper is available on pp. 1948-1954 of vol. 196 (Oct 2011) of Journal of Power Sources, and in our publications section.