Effect of operation parameters on performance of micro direct methanol fuel cell fabricated on printed circuit board
Directed methanol fuel cells (DMFCs) are fabricated on printed circuit board (PCB) substrates by means of a photolithography process. The effects of channel pattern, channel width and methanol flow rate on the performance of the fabricated DMFC are evaluated over a range of flow-channel widths from 200 to 400 μm and flow rates of methanol from 2 to 80 ml min -1. A micro-DMFC with a cross-stripe channel pattern gives superior performance compared with zig-zag and serpentine type of pattern. A single cell with a 200-μm wide channel delivers a maximum power density of 33 mW cm -2 when using 2 M methanol feed at 80 °C. An air-breathing multi-DMFC composed of eight single unit cells gave 180 mW cm -2 by using a methanol reservoir. It is considered that this may be the first reported attempt to develop a multi-DMFC with micro-channels fabricated on a PCB substrate.