Connected evaluation of polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell with dehydrogenation reactor of liquid organic hydrogen carrier

Sanghun Lee, Gwangwoo Han, Taehong Kim, Young Sung Yoo, Sang Yun Jeon, Joongmyeon Bae

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

21 Scopus citations


Recently, hydrogen energy technologies attract attention as power systems. To develop hydrogen energy systems, hydrogen storage methods with high storage density and good safety are required. Liquid organic hydrogen carrier (LOHC) is one of the novel hydrogen storage technologies. LOHC has advantages of high storage density, good safety, and easy handling. In this study, a polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) stack is operated with hydrogen released from LOHC to evaluate the feasibility of the connected operation of the PEMFC stack and LOHC dehydrogenation reactor. Dibenzyltoluene (H0-DBT) is used as a LOHC material, and the dehydrogenation of perhydro dibenzyltoluene (H18-DBT) is conducted at 240–300 °C. Released hydrogen is purified by adsorbent of activated carbon to remove impurities. However, 100–1400 ppm of methane is observed after the purification, and the PEMFC stack power is reduced from 39.4 W to 39.0 W during the operation by hydrogen dilution and physical adsorption of methane. Then, to evaluate the irreversible damage, pure hydrogen was supplied to the PEMFC stack. The stack power is recovered to 39.4 W. It is concluded that the connected operation of the LOHC dehydrogenation reactor and PEMFC stack is feasible, and the activated carbon adsorbent can be a cost-effective purification method for LOHC.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)13398-13405
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Hydrogen Energy
Issue number24
StatePublished - 5 May 2020

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was supported by the Korea Institute of Energy Technology Evaluation and Planning (KETEP) and the Ministry of Trade, Industry & Energy (MOTIE) of the Republic of Korea (No. 2019281010007A ) & (No. 20173010032120 ).

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Hydrogen Energy Publications LLC


  • Dehydrogenation
  • Dibenzyltoluene
  • Energy conversion
  • Liquid organic hydrogen carrier
  • Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cell


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