Proton exchange membrane fuel cell (PEMFC) has been the research focus because of the characteristics of compact
structure, low-temperature starting, high specific energy density and power, environmental protection, prolonged service
time. The bipolar plate in PEMFC has the function of isolating and uniformly distributing reactants, removing reaction
products, collecting and inducing current, providing mechanical support for the cells in the stack collects, etc. The
bipolar plate, which influences not only the cell stack performance but also the stack cost, is a vital component of
PEMFC that is the choke point of industrialization. Compared with the conventional graphite bipolar plate, the metallic
bipolar plate has the advantages of excellent electrical and thermal conductivity, high mechanical strength and power
density, no leakage and good workability. Furthermore, the metal plate is especially suitable for production in mass.
Therefore, metallic bipolar plate is considered to be a promising alternative for PEMFC bipolar. A review of the research
work involves the material selection and processing of bipolar plate, flow-field type and the corresponding design, the
forming methods of metallic bipolar plates. The materials of bipolar plate for PEMFC are focused on graphite, metal or
alloy, and all kinds of composite materials. The disadvantages and advantages of these materials are compared. The flow
channels of bipolar include dot-type, web-type, serpentine-type and the interdigital shape. Among them, serpentine-type
flow channel plates are mentioned in detail. In this paper, we introduced the forming methods of metallic bipolar plates
such as the electrochemical micro-fabrication, electroforming, thermoforming, micro-stamping and micro-milling.
Finally, it points out that the prospective research about the PEMFC is minimization and industrialization.