Electrochemical Engine Center

ECEC Fuel Cell Research: Experimental and Computational Studies of CO Poisoning in PEM Fuel Cells

Investigators: Matthew Mench, C. Y. Wang, and Qunlong Dong

Sponsor: Air Products and Chemicals, Inc.

This project will include a detailed experimental study of CO poisoning of the fuel cell membrane electrode assembly (MEA). Air bleeding, a method by which CO mitigation may be accomplished, will also be examined. This research will a) determine the performance of a fuel cell as a function of temperature and CO contaminant levels, b) compare the performance of three potential reformer schemes with different levels of CO, c) determine the effectiveness of various fractions of air-bleeding on CO-contaminated anode flow, and d) utilize a current density distribution measurement technique to determine the spatial and temporal distribution of CO poisoning and recovery.

Photo at left: Specialized, highly instrumented fuel cells built at the ECEC can measure current density distributions along the surface of the MEA.