Kuo-Lin Huang , Yu-Hsien Liao, Shui-Jen Chen

Department of Environmental Engineering and Science, National Pingtung University of Science and Technology, Pingtung 91201, Taiwan

Received: August 1, 2019
Revised: August 16, 2019
Accepted: August 27, 2019
Download Citation: ||https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2019.08.0369  

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Cite this article:
Huang, K.L., Liao, Y.H. and Chen, S.J. (2019). Emission of Liquid-phase Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons from a Direct Methanol Fuel Cell. Aerosol Air Qual. Res. 19: 2032-2042. https://doi.org/10.4209/aaqr.2019.08.0369


  • Anode and cathode liquid-phase PAHs emitted from a DMFC are compared.
  • The anode and cathode effluent PAHs almost have similar concentration profiles.
  • O2 flowrate influences less on the PAH emission than the other parameters.
  • The emission factor sums of Total-PAHs are 0.06 ± 0.03–3.41 ± 0.86 µg g-electrode–1.
  • The PAH emission factors are smaller for anode than for cathode.


This research concentrates on the comparison between anode methanol and cathode water liquid-phase polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) emitted from a single direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC) at different operating parameters (methanol concentration, methanol flowrate, oxygen flowrate, and cell temperature). When the cell was operated at the standard test condition, the concentrations of PAHs in anode methanol and cathode water effluents were from non-detect (ND) to 0.143 ± 0.111 and ND to 0.155 ± 0.052 µg L–1, respectively; additionally, those of Total-PAHs were 0.343 ± 0.310 and 0.381 ± 0.093 µg L–1, respectively, while those of Total-BaPeq were 19.2 ± 19.6 and 160 ± 54 ng L–1, respectively. Naphthalene was almost the most dominant PAH species when changing one of the operating parameters. For the standard test condition, the anode and cathode emission factor (EF) sums of Total-PAHs and Total-BaPeq were 0.06 ± 0.03 µg g-electrode–1 and 15.7 ± 5.00 ng g-electrode–1, respectively. The EF sum of Total-PAHs (0.06 ± 0.03–3.41 ± 0.86 µg g-electrode–1) increased when increasing methanol flowrate or concentration and decreasing cell temperature, whereas that of Total-BaPeq (0.91 ± 0.52–33.2 ± 5.50 ng g-electrode–1) increased with increasing methanol flowrate or decreasing cell temperature and decreased with increasing methanol concentration or decreasing oxygen flowrate.

Keywords: Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbon; Direct methanol fuel cell (DMFC); Emission factor; Liquid-phase PAH.


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