ABSTRACT

We develop an ex situ technique to quantitatively analyze the transport properties of hydrogen gas dissolved under high pressure in rubbery polymers, such as cylindrical and spherical samples of nitrile butadiene rubber (NBR), ethylene propylene diene monomer (EPDM), and fluoroelastomer (FKM), which are potential sealing materials for hydrogen energy infrastructures. The technique consists of real-time gravimetric measurements during the desorption of hydrogen gas from samples using an electronic balance and a self-developed analysis program to determine the total charge (CH0), diffusivity (D), solubility (S) and permeability (P) of hydrogen. Dual absorption behavior is found for all three rubbers as the charging pressure increases. CH0 follows Henry's law at low pressures of up to ∼25 MPa, whereas the Langmuir model applies at high pressures. No significant pressure, size, or shape dependences are observed for D and P. The measured P values are consistent with those from the literature within the combined uncertainty evaluated. The effect of a carbon black filler mixed into rubber is discussed with respect to S and D. This method can be applicable as a standard test for the transport properties versus the pressure of various polymers irrespective of sample shape.

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