The permeation characteristics of eleven petroleum, coal, and shale oil hydrocarbon liquids through eight different types of glove were measured over 24 h. Two analytical techniques, photoionization and room-temperature phosphorescence of polynuclear aromatic compounds, were used to measure breakthrough times by volatile and low-volatility constituents, respectively. Serious drawbacks to the general use of these techniques for measuring steady-state rates of permeation were noted.
The lighter, smaller molecular-size constituents permeated faster than the larger, multi-ringed aromatic constituents. For the light hydrocarbon fuels, especially gasoline, there was preferential permeation by benzene and toluene. Nitrile was severely corroded after extended exposure to hydroxybenzene-containing coal-derived liquids. A general ranking, from worst to best, of the protection afforded by the different gloves was latex ≪ neoprene < butyl rubber, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) < nitrile < Viton, Tyvek/Saranex 23, and polyvinyl alcohol (PVA). No breakthroughs within 24 h were observed with the latter three glove materials.