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Open Access Publications from the University of California

Modeling and Optimization of PEMFC Systems and its Application to Direct Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicles


Proton Exchange Membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) technology for use in fuel cell vehicles and other applications has been extensively developed in recent decades. Besides the fuel cell stack, air and fuel control, and thermal and water management are major challenges in the fuel cell vehicle development. The air supply system can have a major impact on overall system efficiency. In this report, a fuel cell system model for optimizing system operating conditions was developed which includes the transient dynamics of the air system with varying back pressure. The model is scalable so that it can be used to simulate the operation of an arbitrary size (power) fuel cell. Finally, the model is applied as part of a dynamic forward-looking vehicle model of a load-following direct hydrogen fuel cell vehicle to explore the energy economy optimization potential of fuel cell vehicles.

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