University of Twente Student Theses


Parametric Study of Scaling Rules for a PEM Fuel Cell in Untethered Microrobots

Hornman, A.E. (2023) Parametric Study of Scaling Rules for a PEM Fuel Cell in Untethered Microrobots.

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Abstract:Untethered Devices (UDs) can be defined as wireless devices within the millimetre range, and could have a significant impact on medicine. Some possible uses of microrobots include targeted drug delivery, treatment of vascular diseases, and cell delivery. In this paper a study is done on the effects of downscaling a UD that is powered by a PEM fuel cell. The effects of downscaling are tested for different inlet pressures and cell temperatures, as well as different flow plate designs. The parameters are tested within a range that is safe to use inside the human body. The result of this study shows that upon increasing pressure, the performance of the fuel cell increases. This is valid for all three sizes, thus this will also improve performance upon scaling down. In addition, the overall performance of the microrobot will improve upon scaling down, and also when the pressure is increased. Regarding the temperature, the performance of the microrobot will decrease upon increasing temperature. However, this difference in performance does become less significant for smaller sizes, thus this will likely become irrelevant upon scaling down further. Finally, different flow plate geometries have also been tested using a flow simulation. These show that a 5-step serpentine will result in the best performance of the fuel cell.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:TNW: Science and Technology
Subject:30 exact sciences in general, 33 physics, 35 chemistry, 42 biology, 44 medicine, 50 technical science in general
Programme:Biomedical Technology BSc (56226)
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