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Journal of Electrochemistry ›› 2020, Vol. 26 ›› Issue (6): 789-796.  doi: 10.13208/j.electrochem.191105

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Numerical Simulations of Current and Temperature Distribution of Symmetrical Double-Cathode Solid Oxide Fuel Cell Stacks Based on the Theory of Electric-Chemical-Thermal Coupling

YU Cheng-rong1,2, ZHU Jian-guo1,*(), JIANG Cong-ying2,3, GU Yu-chen2,3, ZHOU Ye-xin4, LI Zhuo-bin5, WU Rong-min5, ZHONG Zheng3,4, GUAN Wan-bing2,*()   

  1. 1. Faculty of Civil Engineering and Mechanics, Jiangsu University, Zhenjiang 212013, China
    2. Ningbo Institute of Material Technology and Engineering, Chinese Academy of Sciences, Ningbo 315201, China
    3. School of Aerospace Engineering and Applied Mechanics, Tongji University, Shanghai 200092, China
    4. School of Science, Harbin Institute of Technology, Shenzhen 518055, China
    5. Zhejiang Energy Technology Research Institute Company Co. Ltd, Hangzhou 311121, China
  • Received:2019-11-01 Revised:2020-02-18 Online:2020-12-28 Published:2020-03-27
  • Contact: ZHU Jian-guo,GUAN Wan-bing E-mail:zhujg@ujsedu.cn;wbguan@nimte.ac.cn


Solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is a high-efficient clean conversion device for future energy management. Because of the low antioxidant reduction ability and complex thermal stress, the structure of traditional asymmetrical thin anode-supported planar SOFC is easily to be broken under stack operating conditions. To overcome these defects, a new complete symmetrical SOFC based on double-sided cathodes was developed. To study the influences of gas flow direction and current collection mode on the cell performance inside stack, a numerical model was established by finite element method based on the theory of electro-thermo-chemo multiphysical coupling. By applying this model, the molar fraction of gas components, current density distribution and temperature distribution in the co-flow side and the counter flow side inside a stack are calculated, and the influences of the cathodic flow mode on the gas components and cell performance are discussed. In addition, the current distribution of the cell under the unilateral current collection mode is simulated, and its effect on the cell performance inside a stack is analyzed. The results show that the current density and temperature distribution on the electrolyte are affected by the flow direction and the current collection model. Large current density distributions are observed at gas inlet and outlet. The temperature distribution on the electrolyte layer under the co-flow model is more uniform than that under the counter flow direction. The average current density on the current collecting side is higher than that on the other side under the single current collection mode. It is also found that the current density and temperature distribution on the electrolyte layer can be effectively improved by reducing the resistance of cathodic cover plate. Moreover, the current collecting position will affect the path of electrons. Thus, optimization of the current collecting position can also contribute to improve the cell output performance inside a stack. This work provides a reference for improving the electric power density and operation life of the double-sided SOFC stack.

Key words: double-sided cathodes, solid oxide fuel cell, multi-physics coupled, co-flow and counter flow, current collection

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