Based on a numerical computation simultaneously solving the fields of flow, heat and mass transfer, the energy budget in a tubular type solid oxide fuel cell is delineated for better understanding of the energy conversion performance and the heat transfer characteristics. It is found that the Joule heating due to ion and electron conduction in cell components is at the same level as that of the thermal energy released from the electrochemical reaction. The energy budget varies significantly with the operating current density of the fuel cell because the Joule heating and thermal energy increase in different manner with the operating current density.

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