This paper observes phenomena related to water production behavior inside a fuel cell and analyzes the effect on the current and temperature distribution across the reaction area. A fuel cell permitting direct observation of the phenomena in the cell, 2-D temperature measurements in the cathode channels, and local current density measurements on the anode side was manufactured. The experimental results showed the production and flow of liquid water in the cell, and there were good correlations among the distributions of current density, temperature, and water amounts in the channels. The behavior of current, voltage, water distribution, and pressure differences in the cathode channels were used to hypothesize about the possibility of gas paths deep in the gas diffusion layer in the flooded condition and a positive feedback mechanism in the drying-out condition.

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