Date of Completion


Embargo Period



Dr. Michael Pettes, Dr. Prabhakar Singh

Field of Study

Mechanical Engineering


Master of Science

Open Access

Campus Access


Investigations into the effects of fuel and air side contaminants within a proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) were conducted via the introduction of selected contaminants in a controlled environment. Results show low electrical costs for hydrogen (>99% purity) production (<$2.00/kg), while utilizing the electrochemical separation of CO in a pulsed hydrogen pump system. Mitigation techniques within a PEMFC have shown a reduction in the voltage loss by a factor of 5 while operating with 1% CO at 400 mA/cm2. Lastly, cation contaminants were observed to accelerate the pitting corrosion on the aluminum sublayer of gold plated aluminum, within an acidic PEMFC simulated environment.

Major Advisor

Dr. Ugur Pasaogullari