Abstract To test the feasibility of DMFC systems in preliminary stages of the design process the design engineer can make use of heuristic models identifying the opportunity of DMFC systems in a specific application. In general these models are to generic and have a low accuracy. To improve the accuracy a second-order model is proposed in this paper. The second-order model consists of an evolutionary algorithm written in Mathematica, which selects a component-set satisfying the fuel-cell systems’ performance requirements, places the components in 3D space and optimizes for volume. The results are presented as a 3D draft proposal together with a feasibility metric. To test the algorithm the design of DMFC system applied in the MP3 player is evaluated. The results show that volume and costs are an issue for the feasibility of the fuel-cell power-system applied in the MP3 player. The generated designs and the algorithm are evaluated and recommendations are given.