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Performance of PEM Liquid-Feed Direct Methanol-Air Fuel CellsA direct methanol-air fuel cell operating at near atmospheric pressure, low-flow rate air, and at temperatures close to 60oC would tremendously enlarge the scope of potential applications. While earlier studies have reported performance with oxygen, the present study focuses on characterizing the performance of a PEM liquid feed direct methanol-air cell consisting of components developed in house. These cells employ Pt-Ru catalyst in the anode, Pt at the cathode and Nafion 117 as the PEM. The effect of pressure, flow rate of air and temperature on cell performance has been studied. With air, the performance level is as high as 0.437 V at 300 mA/cm2 (90oC, 20 psig, and excess air flow) has been attained. Even more significant is the performance level at 60oC, 1 atm and low flow rates of air (3-5 times stoichiometric), which is 0.4 V at 150 mA/cm2. Individual electrode potentials for the methanol and air electrode have been separated and analyzed. Fuel crossover rates and the impact of fuel crossover on the performance of the air electrode have also been measured. The study identifies issues specific to the methanol-air fuel cell and provides a basis for improvement strategies.
Document ID
Document Type
Preprint (Draft being sent to journal)
External Source(s)
Narayanan, S. R.
Date Acquired
August 23, 2013
Publication Date
August 1, 1995
Distribution Limits
Methanol-Air Fuel

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