# Advanced Microfluidics Team

**Scope**

The Advanced Microfluidics Team focuses on the fundamental understanding and design of next-generation, high-performance, durable fuel-cell and electrochemical energy-storage devices, along with the physical characterization of their main components. The work in the group combines cutting-edge multiphysics, multiphase and multiscale modeling techniques with experimental diagnostic and visualization tools. The team actively collaborates with several research and academic institutions around the world. Current research areas include the modeling and experimental analysis of the complex and coupled multiphase mass-charge-heat transport phenomena and electrochemical kinetics that take place in the small scales of PEM Fuel Cells: hydrogen Polymer Electrolyte Fuel Cells (PEFCs), liquid-feed Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFCs) and Direct Ethanol Fuel Cells (DEFCs).

**News**

- Pablo's PhD Thesis was awarded by UC3M as one of the best thesis presented in the Program of Mathematical Engineering during the 2015/16 academic year. His dissertation, supervised by Prof. Vera, dealt with the Multiphysics Modeling of Liquid-Feed Direct Methanol Fuel Cells and the Characterization of Diffusive Transport Properties of Gas Diffusion Layers. (UC3M Outstanding Thesis Awards)
- The group gave a talk at the VII International Conference on Coupled Problems in Science and Enginerring, 12–14 June 2017, Rhodes Island, Greece. (Abstract)
- The group gave two talks at the 11th European Fluid Mechanics Conference, 13–16 September 2016, Seville, Spain. (Abstracts)

**Researchers**

**Collaborators**

- Jeff T. Gostick. Associate Professor, Dept. of Chemical Engineering, McGill University, Montreal, Quebec, Canada.
- Adam Z. Weber. Principal Investigator, Energy Conversion Group, Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, Berkeley, California, USA.
- Iryna Zenyuk. Assistant Professor, Tufts University, Medford, Massachusetts, USA.
- Gisuk Hwang. Associate Professor, Wichita State University, Wichita, Kansas, USA.
- Daniel García-Sánchez. Senior Researcher, Institute of Engineering Thermodynamics, Electrochemical Energy Technology, Deutsches zentrum für Luft und Raumfahrt (DLR), Stuttgart, Germany.
- K. Andreas Friedrich. Head of Department, Institute of Engineering Thermodynamics, Electrochemical Energy Technology, Deutsches zentrum für Luft und Raumfahrt (DLR), Stuttgart, Germany.
- Ramón Zaera. Full Professor, Dept. of Continuum Mechanics and Structural Analysis, University Carlos III of Madrid, Leganés, Spain.
- Pierre Boillat. Scientist, Electrochemistry Laboratory and Neutron Imaging and Activation Group, Paul Scherrer Institut, Villigen, Switzerland.

**Topics of interest**

__FEM Mechanical Modeling of PEM Fuel Cell Components__

__FEM Mechanical Modeling of PEM Fuel Cell Components__

__CFD Multiphysics Macroscopic Modeling of PEM Fuel Cells__

__CFD Multiphysics Macroscopic Modeling of PEM Fuel Cells__

- Hydrogen Proton Exchange Fuel Cells (PEFCs)

- Liquid-Feed Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFCs)

- Direct Ethanol Fuel Cells (DEFCs)

__Pore-Scale Modeling of PEM Fuel Cells and Characterization of Effective Transport Properties__

__Pore-Scale Modeling of PEM Fuel Cells and Characterization of Effective Transport Properties__

__Experimental Analysis of PEM Fuel Cells__

__Experimental Analysis of PEM Fuel Cells__

- Hydrogen Proton Exchange Fuel Cells (PEFCs)

- Liquid-Feed Direct Methanol Fuel Cells (DMFCs)

**Publications**

- P. A. García-Salaberri, M. Vera,
*On the effect of operating conditions in liquid-feed DMFCs: A multiphysics modeling approach*, Energy 113 (2016) 1265–1287. - J. Sánchez-Monreal, P. A. García-Salaberri, M. Vera,
*Mathematical Modeling of Direct Ethanol Fuel Cells Using a Multi-Step Chemical Kinetic Mechanism,*ECS Trans. 72 (2016) 1-16. - D. García-Sanchez, T. Ruiu, K. A. Friedrich, J. Sánchez-Monreal, M. Vera,
*Analysis of the Influence of Temperature and Gas Humidity on the Performance Stability of Polymer Electrolyte Membrane Fuel Cells*, J. Electrochem. Soc. 163 (2016) F150–F159. - P. A. García-Salaberri, J. T. Gostick, G. Hwang, A. Z. Weber, M. Vera,
*Effective diffusivity in partially-saturated carbon-fiber gas diffusion layers: Effect of local saturation and application to macroscopic continuum models*, J. Power Sources 296 (2015) 440–453. - P. A. García-Salaberri, G. Hwang, M. Vera, A. Z. Weber, J. T. Gostick,
*Effective diffusivity in partially-saturated carbon-fiber gas diffusion layers: Effect of through-plane saturation distribution*, Int. J. Heat Mass Transf. 86 (2015) 319–333. - P. A. García-Salaberri, M. Vera,
*On the effects of assembly compression on the performance of liquid-feed DMFCs under methanol-limiting conditions: A 2D numerical study*, J. Power Sources 285 (2015) 543–558. - D. García-Sánchez, T. Ruiu, I. Biswas, K. A. Friedrich, J. Sánchez-Monreal, M. Vera,
*Effect of the Inlet Gas Humidification on PEMFC Behavior and Current Density Distribution*, ECS Trans. 64 (2014) 603–617. - P. A. García-Salaberri, M. Vera, I. Iglesias,
*Modeling of the anode of a liquid-feed DMFC: inhomogeneous compression effects and two-phase transport phenomena*, J. Power Sources 246 (2014) 239–252. - P. A. García-Salaberri, M. Vera, R. Zaera,
*Nonlinear orthotropic model of the inhomogeneous assembly compression of PEM fuel cell gas diffusion layers*, Int. J. Hydrogen Energy 36 (2011) 11856–11870. - M. Vera,
*A single-phase model for liquid-feed DMFC cells with non-Tafel kinetics*, J. Power Sources, 171 (2007) 763–777.

**Research projects**

- Multiphysics modeling of water management phenomena in PEM fuel cells (project EN2015‐68703‐C2‐1‐R of the Spanish Ministerio de Economía y Competitividad).

**Links of interest**

- OpenPNM: An Open Source Pore Network Modeling Package.
- OpenFCST: Open-Source Fuel Cell Simulation Toolbox.
- Energy Systems Design Laboratory (University of Alberta).
- Fuel Cell Systems and Diagnostics (Paul Scherrer Institut).
- International Center for Numerical Methods in Engineering.
- Spanish Fuel Cell Association.
- Toyota Mirai–The Turning Point.

**Pictures**

__VII International Conference on Coupled Problems in Science and Engineering (June 2017, Rhodes Island, Greece)__

__VII International Conference on Coupled Problems in Science and Engineering (June 2017, Rhodes Island, Greece)__

__11__^{th} European Fluid Mechanics Conference (September 2016, Seville, Spain)

__11__

^{th}European Fluid Mechanics Conference (September 2016, Seville, Spain)