Fast and Reliable State-of-Health Model of a PEM Cathode Catalyst Layer
Long-term stability of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells under dynamic operation still has a high potential for optimization, specifically for use in the automotive industry. This stability is especially affected by the degradation processes taking place in the cathode catalyst layer and hence should be fully understood. In this work, we develop a fast and reliable state-of-health model of the cathode catalyst layer, incorporating the electrochemical degradation processes related to anodic and cathodic platinum dissolution, oxidation, Pt loss due to ion diffusion, carbon corrosion and place exchange mechanisms as well as their interaction. For the purpose of validation, the model is developed alongside a comprehensive experimental data set. A detailed parameter study taking into account temperature, relative humidity and load profile dependency was carried out. A good agreement between model and experiment was found for load ranges between 0.6 and 0.95 V. Further, good approximation of the active surface area loss for cell temperatures between 60°C and 90°C and relative humidity between 30% and 100% were achieved.