Development of a galvanostatic analysis technique as an in-situ diagnostic tool for PEMFC single cells and stacks

Kug Seung Lee, Byung Seok Lee, Sung Jong Yoo, Soo Kil Kim, Seung Jun Hwang, Hyung Juhn Kim, Eunae Cho, Dirk Henkensmeier, Jeong Woo Yun, Suk Woo Nam, Tae Hoon Lim, Jong Hyun Jang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

34 Citations (Scopus)


A new galvanostatic analysis technique was developed for PEMFC single cells and stacks, while conventional potentiodynamic techniques, such as cyclic voltammetry for an electrochemical active surface area (EAS) and linear sweep voltammetry for a crossover current (iH2), cannot be directly utilized for stacks. Using a developed relationship for double-layer charging region, the iH2 and Cdl (double-layer capacitance) of a PEMFC single cell could be determined from the galvanostatic data under an atmosphere of nitrogen (cathodes) and hydrogen (anodes). Then, simply from the elapsed time in hydrogen adsorption/desorption region, EAS or roughness factors could be analyzed for a PEMFC single cell. For a 5-cell PEMFC stack, it was experimentally confirmed that the same analysis technique can be applied to analyze performance distribution in PEMFC stacks. As the characteristics of catalyst layers (EAS and Cdl) and polymer electrolyte membranes (iH2) of individual cells can be analyzed without stack disassembly, the developed galvanostatic technique is expected to be utilized for the degradation study and performance monitoring of practical PEMFC stacks.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)5891-5900
Number of pages10
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2012 Apr


  • Electrochemical active surface area
  • Galvanostatic measurement
  • Hydrogen crossover current
  • PEMFC stack diagnosis
  • Pt catalyst

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Fuel Technology
  • Condensed Matter Physics
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology


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