The fuel cell also comprises of an electrolyte which functions to transfer the electrically charged components across electrodes. According to the University of Stathclyde Engineering (2015), fuel cells convert the energy from convectional fuels directly into direct current electrical energy. This results in added advantages in the use of fuel cells during the production of electricity.
The major advantages associated with the use of fuel cells in the production of electricity include high efficiency, reliability and responsivity levels, low production of emissions, flexible use of fuels, flexibility in the size and application of the fuel cells, a longer life and the quiet mode of operation. In regard to high efficiency levels, fuel cells have been established to be better efficient due to lack of thermodynamic laws known to limit Carnot Cycle efficiencies. Theoretically, fuel cells can attain efficiency levels of 83% which is however lower in practice and stands at 50%. The operation mechanism of fuel cells operation ensures increased efficacy due to the lack of an intermediate conversion into heat that is the case with conventional power schemes. Fuel cells have also been established to attain full power of operation with half an hour and their high responsivity (Fuel Cells, 2015). With the use of fuel cells in the production of electricity, only a quester of the maintenance procedures currently used in convectional power production techniques is required. Apart from the preferred fuel for use in fuel cells which is hydrogen, several other alternatives are present including biogas, coal, propane, methanol, ethanol, petroleum among others. This presents an increased flexibility in fuel requirements and its lack of pollution and noise disturbance increases its suitability as a power production method.