An advanced fuel cell simulator

by Acharya, Prabha Ramchandra

Abstract (Summary)
Fuel cell power generation systems provide a clean alternative to the conventional fossil fuel based systems. Fuel cell systems have a high e?ciency and use easily available hydrocarbons like methane. Moreover, since the by-product is water, they have a very low environmental impact. The fuel cell system consists of several subsystems requiring a lot of e?ort from engineers in diverse areas. Fuel cell simulators can provide a convenient and economic alternative for testing the electrical subsystems such as converters and inverters. This thesis proposes a low-cost and an easy-to-use fuel cell simulator using a programmable DC supply along with a control module written in LabVIEW. This simulator reproduces the electrical characteristics of a 5kW solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) stack under various operating conditions. The experimental results indicate that the proposed simulator closely matches the voltage-current characteristic of the SOFC system under varying load conditions. E?ects of non-electrical parameters like hydrogen ?ow rate are also modeled and these parameters are taken as dynamic inputs from the user. The simulator is customizable through a graphical user interface and allows the user to model other types of fuel cells with the respective voltage-current data. The simulator provides an inexpensive and accurate representation of a solid oxide fuel cell under steady state and transient conditions and can replace an actual fuel cell during testing of power conditioning equipment.
Bibliographical Information:

Advisor:Enjeti, Prasad; Singh, Chanan; Howze, Jo; Daripa, Prabir

School:Texas A&M University

School Location:USA - Texas

Source Type:Master's Thesis

Keywords:fuel cell simulator test platform sofc


Date of Publication:08/01/2004

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