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Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/25581

Title: Investigation of Surface Properties and Heterogeneity in Gas Diffusion Layers for Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells
Authors: Fishman, J. Zachary
Advisor: Bazylak, Aimy
Department: Mechanical and Industrial Engineering
Keywords: Gas Diffusion Layer
Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells
Issue Date: 31-Dec-2010
Abstract: The development of improved water management strategies for the polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) could stand to benefit from an improved understanding of the surface and internal structure of the gas diffusion layer (GDL). The GDL is a fibrous porous material enabling mass transport between the PEMFC catalyst layer and flow fields. Fluorescence-based visualizations of liquid water droplet evaporation on GDL surfaces were performed to investigate water droplet pinning behaviours. The heterogeneous in-plane and through-plane porosity distributions of untreated GDLs were studied using computed tomography visualizations. The through-plane porosity distributions were utilized to calculate heterogeneous local tortuosity, relative diffusivity, and permeability distributions. Finally, the heterogeneous through-plane porosity distributions of GDLs treated for increased hydrophobicity were investigated. This work provides new insight into GDL material properties to better inform future PEMFC models.
URI: http://hdl.handle.net/1807/25581
Appears in Collections:Master
Department of Mechanical & Industrial Engineering - Master theses

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