In a PEMFC, feeding dry hydrogen into a dead-ended anode (DEA), reduces the overall system cost, weight and volume due to reduced need for a hydrogen-grade humidification and recirculation subsystems, but requires purging to remove the accumulated water and inert gas. Although the DEA method of operation might be undesirable due to its associated high spatial variability it provides a unique perspective on the evolution of the water accumulation in the anode. Sections of the channel nearest the inlets are significantly drier than those nearest the outlet as shown in the neutron imaging of a 53 cm2 PEMFC. This method allows in-situ visualization of distinct patterns, including water front propagation along the channels. In this paper we utilize neutron imaging of the liquid water distributions and a previously developed PDE model of liquid water flow in the GDL to (a) identify a range of numerical values for the immobile saturation limit, (b) propose a gravity-driven liquid flow in the channels, and (c) derive the two-phase GDL boundary conditions associated with the presence of liquid water in the channel.

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