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This paper presents a multiphysical proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) stack model. The stack model is divided into three submodels describing the different physical domains, namely, electrical, fluidic, and thermal. The stacking method has been used to model the fuel cell stack from a single-cell model. The proposed model has been validated against a 1.2-kW commercial PEMFC stack with excellent agreement between simulation and experimentation. Based on the simulation results, a novel model reduction method is proposed. The reduced model is suitable for real-time simulation purpose. Moreover, a real-time-model-based fuel cell emulator is introduced. The emulator has three real-time computation cores with different rates. The three computation cores are interconnected with a digital communication bus. A dc/dc buck converter is designed in order to receive the model-predicted stack power conditions and emulate the real fuel cell stack power output. The experimental test results show that such an emulator is suitable for fuel cell system hardware-in-the-loop applications.
Date of Publication: July-Aug. 2012