Two computational fluid dynamics models have been developed to predict the performance of a solid oxide fuel cell stack, a detailed and a simplified model. In the detailed model, the three dimensional momentum, heat, and species transport equations are coupled with electrochemistry. In the simplified model, the diffusion terms in the transport equations are selectively replaced by rate terms within the core region of the stack. This allows much coarser meshes to be employed at a fraction of the computational cost. Following the mathematical description of the problem, results for a single cell and multi-cell stack are presented. Comparisons of local current density, temperature, and cell voltage indicate that good agreement is obtained between the detailed and simplified models, confirming the validity of the latter as a practical option in stack design.

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