Title

The Effect of Platinum Catalyst (MEA) Loading (.4/.4 g/cm2) (.4/.1 g/cm2) (.1/.4 g/cm2) at Temperatures of (70oC, 80oC, 90oC), and Relative Humidities of (50%, 75%, 100%), on the Power of a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell

Author(s)

John C. Weiss

School Name

Heathwood Hall Episcopal School

Grade Level

10th Grade

Presentation Topic

Engineering

Presentation Type

Non-Mentored

Oral Presentation Award

3rd Place

Abstract

With resources and training done at the University of South Carolina, this research was completed with the intent to discover whether the power of a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell (PEM) is affected by three different catalyst (MEA) loadings; each at three different temperatures, and three different relative humidity readings (RH). The procedure consisted of the assembly of the fuel cells and the running of the fuel cell testing system, which measures the current, voltage, and power. The results were analyzed with power/current comparison graphs, as well as an Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) test for each of the nine variables.

The results showed the highest amount of power in the .4/.4 (mg/cm2) loading at 80oC and 100% RH. The lowest power readings were in the .4/.1 loading. It is important to note the reaction on the hydrogen side of the MEA (anode) is significantly shorter than the reaction on the oxygen side of the MEA (cathode). This is because separating the input (water) requires two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. To balance the amounts of each atom, there must be twice the loading on the oxygen side. Because of this, the loading of .1/.4 produced a lower power reading than the .4/.4 loading but a higher reading than the .4/.1 loading. Therefore, with a ratio of 1:2 (anode:cathode loading), the higher the MEA loading, the higher the power.

Start Date

4-11-2015 2:00 PM

End Date

4-11-2015 2:15 PM

COinS
 
Apr 11th, 2:00 PM Apr 11th, 2:15 PM

The Effect of Platinum Catalyst (MEA) Loading (.4/.4 g/cm2) (.4/.1 g/cm2) (.1/.4 g/cm2) at Temperatures of (70oC, 80oC, 90oC), and Relative Humidities of (50%, 75%, 100%), on the Power of a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell

With resources and training done at the University of South Carolina, this research was completed with the intent to discover whether the power of a Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell (PEM) is affected by three different catalyst (MEA) loadings; each at three different temperatures, and three different relative humidity readings (RH). The procedure consisted of the assembly of the fuel cells and the running of the fuel cell testing system, which measures the current, voltage, and power. The results were analyzed with power/current comparison graphs, as well as an Analysis of Variance (ANOVA) test for each of the nine variables.

The results showed the highest amount of power in the .4/.4 (mg/cm2) loading at 80oC and 100% RH. The lowest power readings were in the .4/.1 loading. It is important to note the reaction on the hydrogen side of the MEA (anode) is significantly shorter than the reaction on the oxygen side of the MEA (cathode). This is because separating the input (water) requires two hydrogen atoms and one oxygen atom. To balance the amounts of each atom, there must be twice the loading on the oxygen side. Because of this, the loading of .1/.4 produced a lower power reading than the .4/.4 loading but a higher reading than the .4/.1 loading. Therefore, with a ratio of 1:2 (anode:cathode loading), the higher the MEA loading, the higher the power.