Influence of thermal conductivity on the thermal behavior of intermediate-temperature solid oxide fuel cells

Nurul Ashikin Mohd Nazrul Aman, Andanastuti Muchtar, Masli Irwan Rosli, Nurul Akidah Baharuddin, Mahendra Rao Somalu, Noor Shieela Kalib

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Abstract

Solid oxide fuel cells (SOFCs) are among one of the promising technologies for efficient and clean energy. SOFCs offer several advantages over other types of fuel cells under relatively high temperatures (600oC to 800oC). However, the thermal behavior of SOFC stacks at high operating temperatures is a serious issue in SOFC development because it can be associated with detrimental thermal stresses on the life span of the stacks. The thermal behavior of SOFC stacks can be influenced by operating or material properties. Therefore, this work aims to investigate the effects of the thermal conductivity of each component (anode, cathode, and electrolyte) on the thermal behavior of samarium-doped ceria-based SOFCs at intermediate temperatures. Computational fluid dynamics is used to simulate SOFC operation at 600oC. The temperature distributions and gradients of a single cell at 0.7 V under different thermal conductivity values are analyzed and discussed to determine their relationship. Simulations reveal that the influence of thermal conductivity is more remarkable for the anode and electrolyte than for the cathode. Increasing the thermal conductivity of the anode by 50% results in a 23% drop in the maximum thermal gradients. The results for the electrolyte are subtle, with a ~67% reduction in thermal conductivity that only results in an 8% reduction in the maximum temperature gradient. The effect of thermal conductivity on temperature gradient is important because it can be used to predict thermal stress generation.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)132-139
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Electrochemical Science and Technology
Volume11
Issue number2
Early online date6 May 2020
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - May 2020

Keywords

  • Computational Fluid Dynamics
  • Modeling
  • SOFC
  • Thermal Behavior
  • Thermal Conductivity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrochemistry

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