The development of a more efficient and power dense solid oxide fuel cell (SOFC) requires better treatment of irreversibilities that exist in present SOFC designs. Loss due to material resistance, or Joule heating, is one such loss that substantially hinders present SOFC designs. This work examines two dimensional (2D) continuum electronic charge and heat transfer models of the SOFC to examine how Joule heating can be characterized and quantified in terms of the common and easily measured microstructure properties of tortuosity, Ni mean free path, and Ni contiguity. By modeling these processes at the pore scale, presently lacking in the literature, this work uses a direct approach to develop a working understanding of how to quantify the SOFC microstructure geometric features with respect to ohmic performance. It has been found that while the pore tortuosity has little correlation to ohmic performance, the Ni mean free path and contiguity were found to be excellent measures of a 2D anode microstructure’s ohmic performance.

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