Standard Article

Metal bipolar plates and coatings

Fuel Cell Technology and Applications

Polymer electrolyte membrane fuel cells and systems (PEMFC)

Bipolar plate materials and flow field design

  1. J. Wind,
  2. A. LaCroix,
  3. S. Braeuninger,
  4. P. Hedrich,
  5. C. Heller,
  6. M. Schudy

Published Online: 15 DEC 2010

DOI: 10.1002/9780470974001.f303028

Handbook of Fuel Cells

Handbook of Fuel Cells

How to Cite

Wind, J., LaCroix, A., Braeuninger, S., Hedrich, P., Heller, C. and Schudy, M. 2010. Metal bipolar plates and coatings. Handbook of Fuel Cells. .

Author Information

  1. European Aeronautic Defence and Space Company, Friedrichshafen, Germany

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 15 DEC 2010


The use of metals as a material for bipolar plates in proton exchange membrane (PEM) fuel cells offer a number of advantages in comparison with other materials. Several companies and institutes are currently working on the development of such bipolar plates and have patented their results. Whereas in the production of metallic bipolar plates there are no major obstacles, there are still some issues to be solved concerning corrosion and conductivity of these plates in the fuel cell environment. Up to now, the method of solving these issues seems to be to coat the plates with materials which prevent corrosion and growth of oxide layers with a high resistivity. The requirements for these bipolar plates and their current status is outlined in the chapter.


  • bipolar plate;
  • coating;
  • contact resistance;
  • contaminant;
  • corrosion;
  • PEM fuel cell;
  • stainless steel