The purpose of this study is to point out the dominant factor of heat and mass distribution in single cell of polymer electrolyte fuel cell (PEFC). The numerical simulation by simple 3D model of PEFC has been investigated to clarify the influence of cell components structure on heat and mass transfer phenomena in PEFC. In addition, the power generation experiment and the measurement of in-plane temperature distribution by thermograph were carried out. From the simulation results, the gas channel pitch of separator was the key factor to unify in-plane distribution of temperature and gas concentration on the reaction surface. The compression of gas diffusion layer (GDL) by cell binding caused wider distribution of mass concentration in GDL. According to the experimental results, the power generation performance was promoted with the decrease in gas channel pitch irrespective of relative humidity of supply gas. In addition, the temperature range in observation area was lower with the decrease in gas channel pitch.

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