Gas sorption and characterization of poly(ether-b-amide) segmented block copolymers

V. I. Bondar, B. D. Freeman, I. Pinnau

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The solubilities of He, H2, N2, O2, CO2, CH4, C2H6, C3H8, and n-C4H10 were determined at 35 °C and pressures up to 27 atmospheres in a systematic series of phase separated polyether-polyamide segmented block copolymers containing either poly-(ethylene oxide) [PEO] or poly(tetramethylene oxide) [PTMEO] as the rubbery poly-ether phase and nylon 6 [PA6] or nylon 12 [PA12] as the hard polyamide phase. Sorption isotherms are linear for the least soluble gases (He, H2, N2, O2, and CH4), convex to the pressure axis for more soluble penetrants (CO2, C3H8, and n-C4H10) and slightly concave to the pressure axis for ethane. These polymers exhibit high CO2/N2 and CO2/H2 solubility selectivity. This property appears to derive mainly from high carbon dioxide solubility, which is ascribed to the strong affinity of the polar ether linkages for CO2. As the amount of the polyether phase in the copolymers increases, gas solubility increases. The solubility of all gases is higher in polymers with less polar constituents, PTMEO and PA12, than in polymers with more polar PEO and PA6 units. CO2/N2 and CO2/H2 solubility selectivity, however, are higher in polymers with higher concentrations of polar repeat units. The sorption data are complemented with physical characterization (differential scanning calorimetry, elemental analysis, and wide angle X-ray diffraction) of the various block copolymers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2463-2475
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Polymer Science, Part B: Polymer Physics
Issue number17
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 1999
Externally publishedYes

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