Electrochemical Application For
Advanced Energy System Labortary.


Studies on the effect of flow configuration on the temperature distribution and performance in a high current density region of solid oxide fuel cell
Lee Hae Lee
Han Nyeon Gu, Kim Min Soo, Kim Young Sang, Kim Dong Kyu*
Applied Thermal Engineering

The effect of temperature distribution on the performance of solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) is analyzed for various channel designs in a high current density region. By considering heat accumulation due to local electrochemical reactions and cooling due to flow patterns, the heat distributions in three flow configurations (co-flow, counter-flow, and cross-flow) are analyzed, with the most appropriate channel in the high power region selected. The average operating temperature of the cell is the highest for the counter-flow configuration and the lowest for co-flow. The temperature of the counter-flow configuration is approximately 10 K higher than that of co-flow. The temperature distribution of counter-flow configuration, however, is the most uniform among different flow patterns. The maximum temperature difference in the counter-flow channel is approximately 8 K, but that in co-flow is approximately 22 K. Furthermore, the performance of the cell using the counter-flow configuration is the best in that it shows 5% higher power density and 3.35% higher system efficiency than the other flow configurations. Therefore, the counter-flow configuration is superior at high power because it has the lowest temperature gradient and the best cell performance. This paper contributes to the commercialization of the fuel cell by presenting appropriate parameters for temperature regulation and suitable flow configuration for operation at high power.