Gas sorption and transport in poly(phenylene oxide) and comparisons with other glassy polymers



The sorption and transport of several gases in poly(phenylene oxide) were measured at 35°C, and the results have been analyzed in terms of the dual sorption/mobility models which have been successfully employed for this purpose for other glassy polymers. Both the extent of sorption and rate of permeation of gases are quite large for poly(phenylene oxide) compared to other glassy polymers with rigid chain backbones. It is shown that the high extent of sorption is owing to the high glass transition temperature of this polymer, but this is not a significant factor in its high permeability to gases. The latter stems from large diffusion coefficients. It is shown that the capacity of the Langmuir mode of sorption inherent to glassy polymers is related to the value of the glass transition temperature in a general way for a wide variety of polymers. Observations about the diffusion coefficients for numerous gas–polymer pairs are discussed.