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3rd Thermal and Fluids Engineering Conference (TFEC)

ISSN: 2379-1748

ANALYSIS OF LIQUID-GAS TWO-PHASE FLOW PRESSURE DROP SIGNATURE IN MINICHANNELS

Mehdi Mortazavi
Multiscale Thermal Fluids Laboratory, Western New England University, Springfield, MA, 01119, USA

Seyed A. Niknam
Western New England University, Springfield, MA, 01119, USA

DOI: 10.1615/TFEC2018.mph.021681
pages 1667-1680


KEY WORDS: liquid-gas two-phase flow, pressure drop, PEM fuel cell, minichannel

Abstract

In this paper, the liquid-gas two-phase flow pressure drop signatures are analyzed for minichannels. The twophase flow pressure drops are measured in a 2mm×1mm flow channel supplied with air and liquid water. The ranges of air and water flow rates represent operating conditions of proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells. As a PEM fuel cell operates, chemical energy is converted into electrical energy with water and heat as byproducts. The produced water can pass through the gas diffusion layer (GDL), a porous layer in PEM fuel cell, and emerges on its surface within the flow channel. This causes liquid-gas two-phase flow in flow channels. In this study, liquid-gas two-phase flow pressure drops are measured in an ex-situ PEM fuel cell test section. The experimentally measure pressure drops are compared with three models of two-phase flow pressure drop. Comparing 108 experimentally measured pressure drop data points with models proposed by Saisorn and Wongwises [29], English and Kandlikar [24], and Mishima and Hibiki [28] revealed that the latter showed the best prediction capability with a mean absolute percentage error as low as 10%. Moreover, in this study the distribution of pressure signatures are plotted and analyzed.

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