The structure and properties of gas diffusion layer (GDL) and micro-porous layer (MPL) are crucially important for the performance of proton exchange membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). Among which, the penetration of MPL into GDL is a common and critical phenomenon. However, the related research is still insufficient. In order to investigate the impact of MPL penetrating into GDL on fuel cells performance, a three-dimensional multiphase model is described, and the impact of different penetration rate and inlet relative humidity (RH) are discussed. The results demonstrate that larger penetration rate causes better performance due to the better water management. Besides, the liquid water accumulates in the transition region, which increases the oxygen transport resistance.
Keywords PEMFCs, GDL, MPL, penetration, water management