Characteristics of a direct methanol fuel cell system with the time shared fuel supplying approach

Youngseung Na, Jungmin Kwon, Hyun Kim, Hyejung Cho, Inseob Song

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

18 Scopus citations


DMFC (direct methanol fuel cell) systems usually employ two pumps for supplying the methanol solution. The conventional system configuration, however, may bring about free flow from the methanol reservoir and malfunctions in the self-priming of the pumps. When instruments such as check valves and pressure regulators are applied, they result in excessive weight and control system malfunctions. In this paper, a light and robust DMFC system is proposed. By using the time sharing approach to supply fuel with a 3-way valve, free flow does not occur because only one inlet is opened at one time which means that both the circulation flow from gas liquid separator and the fuel flow from the methanol cartridge are not allowed to be opened at same time. As a result, back flow and self-priming problems do not occur. This makes the system stable and robust due to the removal of both the check valves and the fluctuation from unstable back pressure. Stabilized system doesn't need excessive battery buffering and recycling water any more, which are responsible for the heavy system. The proposed system performs the same level of power and efficiency with the conventional system. Adaptability is also carried out in various environmental temperature conditions.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)406-411
Number of pages6
Issue number1
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2013


  • Back flow
  • Direct methanol fuel cell system
  • Free flow
  • Fuel feeding
  • Separation principle


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