Skip to main content
Engineering LibreTexts

31: Fuel Cells

  • Page ID

    Learning Objectives

    On completion of this TLP you should:

    • The principle behind fuel cells and what constitutes a fuel cell.
    • A brief history of the technology.
    • Function and specifics of four main types of fuel cell:
      • Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC)
      • Molten carbonate fuel cell (MCFC)
      • Proton exchange membrane/ polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC)
      • Direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC)
    • The advantages, problems and applications associated with each of the different electrolytes commonly used in fuel cells, including discussion of the factors influencing their suitability.
    • The electrochemical explanation of the fuel cell processes.
    • The requirements of fuelling a fuel cell system including “balance of plant” considerations, reforming and ways of storing the fuel.
    • Building a simple fuel cell.

    Before you start

    • You should be familiar with the principles of electrochemical reactions
    • You should understand the principles of thermodynamics

    • Was this article helpful?