Axiomatic Design of Carbon Composite Bipolar Plates for PEMFC Vehicles

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A PEMFC (Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cell or Proton Exchange Membrane Fuel Cell) stack is composed of Gas Diffusion Layers (GDLs), Membrane Electrode Assemblies (MEAs), endplates and bipolar plates. The bipolar plates are multifunctional components as they collect and conduct the current from cell to cell, separate the fuel and oxidant gases and provide flow channels in the plates to deliver the reacting gases to the fuel cell electrodes. The electrical resistance of bipolar plates should be very low in order to conduct the electricity generated in the fuel cell with minimum electrical loss. In this study, the concept of the continuous carbon fiber composite bipolar plate coated with graphite foil is suggested by Axiomatic Design Theory and verified experimentally. Consequently, the total resistance in the through thickness direction of composite bipolar plate was reduced by 86% compared to that of conventional composite bipolar plates through the employment of a graphite coating layer.
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PEMFC; Bipolar plate; Axiomatic Design; Graphite coating method


21st CIRP Design Conference

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Proceedings of the 21st CIRP Design Conference
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