41 Introduction

The first three sections of this chapter will give a history of fuel cells; describe the main types of fuel cells, their characteristics and development status; discuss the thermodynamics; and look at the process engineering aspects of fuel-cell systems. It is based on a series of lectures given by Roger Booth to undergraduates at the Department of Engineering Science at the University of Oxford, under the Royal Academy of Engineering Visiting Professor Scheme in 1999. The assistance of Dr Gary Acres of Johnson Matthey in preparing this chapter is greatly appreciated.

The remaining sections deal with the control systems for fuel cells that turn them into 'fuel-cell engines' and considers the problems of package layout for all EVs as an introduction to the package design case studies reviewed in the following two chapters.

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