Numerical study to examine the performance of multi-pass serpentine flow-fields for cooling plates in polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells

Seung-Ho Yu, Sangho Sohn, Jin Hyun Nam, Charn Jung Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

60 Citations (Scopus)


Temperature is an important factor that impacts the performance of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells (PEMFCs). Proper cooling systems are indispensable for heat management. Cooling plates with coolant flow channels are mainly used to release the reaction heat in PEMFCs and thus control their operating temperature. In this study, several multi-pass serpentine flow-field (MPSFF) designs are studied in order to achieve better heat management by using cooling plates. Based on computational fluid dynamics (CFD) simulations of fluid flow and heat transfer in the cooling plates, the cooling performance of the six serpentine channel designs is evaluated. The results demonstrate that MPSFFs lead to better cooling performance compared with a conventional serpentine flow-field, in terms of both the maximum temperature and temperature uniformity. The effect of the Reynolds number and heat flux on the cooling performance exhibited by the six designs is also investigated.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)697-703
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Power Sources
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2009 Dec 1
Externally publishedYes



  • Coolant flow channel
  • Cooling plate
  • Heat management
  • Multi-pass serpentine flow-fields
  • Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell
  • Temperature uniformity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Renewable Energy, Sustainability and the Environment
  • Energy Engineering and Power Technology
  • Physical and Theoretical Chemistry
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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