/ PHYSICS SEMINAR
Center for Microgravity Research
NASA Glenn Research Center
School of Engineering
April 28, 2003, 3pm
Willet Science Center 101
Management in PEM Fuel Cells
cells are receiving tremendous attention in the science and engineering
community as a potential alternative to petroleum based power sources.
Proton Exchange Membrane (PEM) fuel cells consist of a cathode and an
anode sandwiching an electrolyte membrane, and maintain a reaction between
oxygen and hydrogen to produce water, heat, and electricity.
Dehydration of the membrane may result in degraded performance and
possibly catastrophic failure.
On the other hand, liquid-water saturation of the membrane or
destabilization of liquid films may result in a deprivation of oxygen to the
the fluid physics in the small, complex, manifolding passages of fuels cells is
essential to the development of reliable, low temperature fuel cells both on
Earth and in space-based application. An
overview of PEM-fuel-cell operation and water management issues will be
presented followed by a brief description of experimental research at Glenn
Research Center on two-phase microfluidic flow in complex geometries.
The current state of some theoretical efforts considering the stability
of such a flow will also be presented leading to a discussion of potential
Areas of interest for undergraduate and faculty research include:
1) physics - optics, microscopy, experimentation, 2) chemistry - water
production studies, chemically reacting flows, 3) applied mathematics -
dynamics, linear systems, asymptotics, 4) engineering - computational fluid
dynamics, experimentation, fluid mechanics.
join us for light refreshments outside WSC 109 at 2:45.
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