Planar solid oxide fuel cell modeling and optimization targeting the stack's temperature gradient minimization

Amirpiran Amiri, Shi Tang, Periasamy Vijay, Moses O. Tadé*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Minimization of undesirable temperature gradients in all dimensions of a planar solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) is central to the thermal management and commercialization of this electrochemical reactor. This article explores the effective operating variables on the temperature gradient in a multilayer SOFC stack and presents a trade-off optimization. Three promising approaches are numerically tested via a model-based sensitivity analysis. The numerically efficient thermo-chemical model that had already been developed by the authors for the cell scale investigations (Tang et al. Chem. Eng. J. 2016, 290, 252-262) is integrated and extended in this work to allow further thermal studies at commercial scales. Initially, the most common approach for the minimization of stack's thermal inhomogeneity, i.e., usage of the excess air, is critically assessed. Subsequently, the adjustment of inlet gas temperatures is introduced as a complementary methodology to reduce the efficiency loss due to application of excess air. As another practical approach, regulation of the oxygen fraction in the cathode coolant stream is examined from both technical and economic viewpoints. Finally, a multiobjective optimization calculation is conducted to find an operating condition in which stack's efficiency and temperature gradient are maximum and minimum, respectively.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)7446-7455
Number of pages10
JournalIndustrial and Engineering Chemistry Research
Issue number27
Early online date1 Jul 2016
Publication statusPublished - 13 Jul 2016

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© 2016, Elsevier. Licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International


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