Estimation of diffusion coefficient for solute–polymer systems

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Abstract

Diffusion coefficients are needed for the analysis of many mass transfer problems involving polymers. Since the diffusivity for such systems are strong functions of temperature and concentration, the analysis of these problems is greatly facilitated if predictive methods are available for the determination of the required diffusion coefficient. Because of the limitations of the theoretical approaches for estimating diffusivity, empirical correlation of solute–polymer diffusion coefficient data with physical properties of the solute were investigated. Chemical permeation measurements were made for several organic liquids through three elastomers (polychoroprene, butyl and nitrile rubber) at five different temperatures, ranging from 25 to 65°C. The collected diffusivities were correlated with liquid kinematic viscosity. Diffusivities (at different temperatures) depend mainly on the kinematic viscosity of solutes. The results also indicate a close relation between the variation of diffusivity and viscosity with temperature.

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