Students conduct experiments in this lab that unravel fundamentals of water transport in the gas diffusion layers and channels of fuel cell. Water is the product of the electrochemical reaction between hydrogen and oxygen in the air supplied to fuel cells. The experiments are conducted with a water flow in the fuel cell gas channels simulating the conditions encountered in proton exchange membrane fuel cells used in automotive applications. The frequency and size of water features appearing in the channels and the resulting pressure drop are measured using a high speed camera. This information is used in generating models for predicting two-phase pressure drop in gas channels. This lab provides fundamental information that provides experimental data and models that help in water management issues related to fuel cell operation. Dr. Satish Kandlikar manages this lab.
Equipment in the Lab
The Department of Energy is the main sponsor of the lab.