Dynamic simulation of a PEM fuel cell system

Dept. of Elec. and Electr. Eng., Eng. and Arch. Fac, Dicle University, Diyarbakır, TÜRKĐYE


In the near future, some fuel cell systems could be an accessible and attractive alternative to conventional electricity generation and vehicle drives. The polymer electrolyte membrane (interchangeably called proton exchange membrane, PEM) fuel cell systems can be made in mW to kW capacities; hence a wide range of applications can be covered by this type of fuel cell. This is a major advantage of this type of fuel cell, because once the technology was developed it can be more or less easily scaled up or down for various applications. PEM fuel cell has attracted a great deal of attention as a potential power source for automobile and stationary applications due to its low temperature of operation, high power density and high energy conversion efficiency. Great progress has been made over the past twenty years in the development of PEM fuel cell technology. However, there are still several technical challenges that need to be addressed before commercialization of PEM fuel cell. In this study, the dynamics of a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell system is modelled, simulated and presented. Matlab –Simulink TM is used for the modeling and simulation of the fuel cell system. The fuel cell system model consists of the dynamics of reactant flow, fuel cell model and power conditioning units. Also, characteristic of 1.2 W PEM fuel cell system is obtained by experiments. Simulation and experimental results are presented in this paper. The analyses of grid connected or stand alone applications of PEM fuel cell generator system can be achieved with this dynamic simulation model.

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    • "This loss is considered as the ignition spark that must be given to start the reactions. It depends on the temperature, the partial pressures, and the catalyst used on the electrodes, and it is given by a semi empirical equation: [3] Where ξ i are parametric coefficients, i FC is the cell current, and C O2 is the oxygen's concentration mol/cm 3 on the catalytic interface which equals: "
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    ABSTRACT: This study aims to analyze a renewable proton exchange membrane PEM fuel cell system, by dividing it into four subsystems (PEM fuel cells as the main power source, PEM electrolyser as hydrogen producer, photovoltaic modules as the renewable source that supplies the electrolyser, and hydrogen tank). Then, a mathematical model of each subsystem is simulated in MATLAB to get the operational curves, which are used to design a 1kW fuel cell system starting with calculating the amount of hydrogen needed by the fuel cells to work continuously, then the size of the water electrolyser used to produce this hydrogen, and the energy needed for electrolysis process. Then, estimating the enough power of the PV modules to provide this energy, according to the solar irradiance in Damascus city, and finally determine the size of hydrogen tank used to store the extra necessary hydrogen to keep fuel cells supply uninterrupted power among the whole year.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2015 · Energy Procedia
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    • "The PEMFC is used in hybrid power generation rather than other fuel cells because it's low operating temperature and high efficiencies. A single FC generate very low amount of voltage and current, so FC stack is required to get desirable output voltage and current [5] [6]. "
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    ABSTRACT: In this paper, the mathematical analysis of solar photovoltaic (PV) system and proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) system is presented. The renewable energy (RE) sources e.g. PV system and PEMFC are integrated for hybrid PV/FC power generation. The PV system is considered as primary electrical power generating RE source, and the PEMFC is utilized as power backup source in unfavorable environmental conditions of PV system. Furthermore, in cloudy days, the solar PV system is not capable to generate sufficient power to the load applications due to this a PEMFC can be utilized for power generation. For transient analysis of this hybrid PV/FC power generating system, a water pump load is considered. A Fuzzy logic based maximum power point tracking (MPPT) technique is proposed to achieve maximum power point (MPP) through the PV system. A three phase induction motor (IM) is taken for water pumping system (WPS) application and the complete proposed system is designed in MATLAB/Simulink environment.
    Full-text · Article · Apr 2015
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    • "Although some researchers have proposed an effective model for system and control development [4] [10], the nonlinearity and time-varying characteristics still pose difficult problems for system identification and control. Simplified models, either linear or nonlinear, with nominal parameters are usually valid within a linear range of operation. "
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    ABSTRACT: Nonlinearity and the time-varying dynamics of fuel cell systems make it complex to design a controller for improving output performance. This paper introduces an application of a model reference adaptive control to a low-power proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cell system, which consists of three main components: a fuel cell stack, an air pump to supply air, and a solenoid valve to adjust hydrogen flow. From the system perspective, the dynamic model of the PEM fuel cell stack can be expressed as a multivariable configuration of two inputs, hydrogen and air-flow rates, and two outputs, cell voltage and current. The corresponding transfer functions can be identified off-line to describe the linearized dynamics with a finite order at a certain operating point, and are written in a discrete-time auto-regressive moving-average model for on-line estimation of parameters. This provides a strategy of regulating the voltage and current of the fuel cell by adaptively adjusting the flow rates of air and hydrogen. Experiments show that the proposed adaptive controller is robust to the variation of fuel cell system dynamics and power request. Additionally, it helps decrease fuel consumption and relieves the DC/DC converter in regulating the fluctuating cell voltage.
    Full-text · Article · May 2008 · Journal of Power Sources
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