Permeability Properties of Plastics and Elastomers


  • Laurence McKeen, Senior Research Associate, DuPont, Wilmington, DE, USA


Permeability properties are essential data for the selection of materials and design of products across a broad range of market sectors from food packaging to Automotive applications to Medical Devices. This unique handbook brings together a wealth of permeability data in a form that enables quick like-for-like comparisons between materials.

The data is supported by a full explanation of its interpretation, and an introduction to the engineering aspects of permeability in polymers.

The third edition includes expanded explanatory text which makes the book accessible to novices as well as experienced engineers, written by industry insider and author Larry McKeen (DuPont), and 20% new data and major new explanatory text sections to aid in the interpretation and application of the data.

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Primary: Plastics Engineers, Product Design Engineers, Materials Engineers, Application Engineers in Packaging (films), Automotive, Medical Device, Pharmaceutical, Food, Cosmetics etc. industries; Secondary: Polymer and Coatings Chemists, users of film packaging products and containers, coatings manufacturers and users, users of polymer membranes and films for other applications (such as solar panels, fuel cells), designers of automotive components that are exposed to fuels, oils, fluids and other liquids.


Book information

  • Published: September 2011
  • ISBN: 978-1-4377-3469-0

Table of Contents

1. Nature of Barrier Polymer Materials

2. Collected Comparative Properties of Plastics and Elastomers

3. Processing

4. Markets and Applications

5. Automotive Fuels

6. Multi-Layer Films

7. Food and Beverage Packaging

8. Permeability of Gloves

9. Standard Measurement and Testing

Resin Data Chapters (92)

Appendices: Permeation Rates, Permeation Units Conversion



Chapter 1: Introduction (Complete rewrite and reorganize, the earlier editions do not teach or

educate - this chapter should lead to understanding the subject matter); current page count is 56, I

would expect it to total 100 at least

Revision Plan

In particular:

• expand section on “Polymers 101”, at least 12 additional pages

• expand section on “Elastomers 101”, at least 5 pages additional

• Improve the section on theory

• Add section on plastics formulations and the effect of additives on permeation

• Expand coatings

• Redo existing charts and tables to better take up the available space on the pages

• Redo many drawings in improve quality

• Expand standard test methods to include more detail, explanation, with drawings, at least

10 additional pages

Data chapters:

• Add background to each polymer, including chemical structures

• Add more detail on major manufacturers and their product lines and trademarks

• Add detail about grades

• Redesign tables to make them use space more effectively, this may lead to reduced page

number even though more information may be included

• Add new available data (I expect at least 20% more additional data)

• Add several new polymers

• Refine polymer Group logically based on chemistry, this was not badly done in the

original editions

• Redo the reference numbers to eliminate gaps

• Add interesting applications, such as the use of ETFE in special building roofs (Eden

project etc.)

• Make corrections on suppliers and trade names caused by industry consolidation