Dynamics and Control of Fuel Cells

Sinha, M., General Motors

Considerable research and development efforts have been devoted to fuel cell operation and systems. In particular, in the area of polymer electrolyte membrane (PEM) fuel cells for mobile and stationary applications. Goal of a control system is to modify the natural response of fuel cell electrochemical reactor and maintain desired operation in presence of uncertainties and disturbances. Moreover, control system attempts to diagnose abnormal operation, monitor heath of stack, and adapts operation to address material and electrode degradation. Wide range of operating conditions that the fuel cell system needs to operate also makes the controls challenging. Heart of any control system is in understanding the dynamic behavior of the plant, through mathematical modeling and exploiting this understanding for improved control and operation. This session will focus control relevant modeling, feedback controls strategy and online diagnostic algorithms for improving the controllability of fuel cell system. Development on software based sensors to observe fuel cell operating states is also relevant to this session’s objectives.



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