Journal of Power Sources
The mechanical response of a composite fuel cell membrane, made from layers of reinforced and unreinforced PFSA material, is investigated via both experimental and numerical means. First, the time-dependent mechanical properties for the reinforced layers are measured for a range of environmental and loading conditions. A three-network, viscoelastic-plastic constitutive model is developed to characterize the mechanical response of this reinforced membrane material. This constitutive model is then used in finite element simulations of a fuel cell unit (consisting of composite membrane, electrodes, gas diffusion layer and bipolar plates) where the effect of relative humidity (RH) cycling on the stress response of the composite membrane is investigated. Using numerical simulations, various layering configurations for the composite membrane and different load cases are studied. The investigation provides insight into the stress response of the membrane and suggests possible configurations that may improve the effective membrane life.
Khattra, N. S., Lu, Z., Karlsson, A. M., 2013, "Time-Dependent Mechanical Response of a Composite PFSA Membrane," Journal of Power Sources, 228pp. 256-269.
NOTICE: this is the author’s version of a work that was accepted for publication in Journal of Power Sources. Changes resulting from the publishing process, such as peer review, editing, corrections, structural formatting, and other quality control mechanisms may not be reflected in this document. Changes may have been made to this work since it was submitted for publication. A definitive version was subsequently published in Journal of Power Sources, 228, , (04-15-2013); 10.1016/j.jpowsour.2012.11.116
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This research has been supported by DOE grant DE-FC36-
086018052 through a subcontract from W. L. Gore & Associates, Inc