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The permeability of sheet materials to gases and vapors is a property that is the basis for many of their modern applications. Plastic films and plastic-coated papers, for example, are used extensively in packaging of perishable foods because of their relative imperviousness to air and moisture. The permeability of plastic and rubber sheet materials to air and other gases affects also their use in balloons. By the same token, permeability of rubber to air is a factor in its use in tire tubes. Other applications of interest are related to the permeability of rubber and other elastomers to volatile liquids and the transmission of water vapor through protective coatings. In the latter case, the protective coatings may serve to maintain the electrical properties of wires, cables, and appliances, or to retard corrosion in the substrate material.
M & C Nuclear, Inc., Attleboro, Mass.