Gas permeability of silicone oil?

Tom Anderson via (by ucgatan from
Sun Apr 1 10:43:23 EST 2007

On Fri, 30 Mar 2007, DK wrote:

> In article <mailman.575.1175267794.5139.methods from>, Tom Anderson <ucgatan from> wrote:
> >Does anyone have any idea how permeable silicone oils are to gases? Oxygen
> >and carbon dioxide are the ones i'm interested in, really; water, too.
> Evaporation of water through mineral oil (paraffin oil) is very, very
> slow, definitely negligible on a timescale of few days even with
> microliter drops. Silicone oil MUCH more permeable. In crystallography,
> silicone oil is sometimes used to induce very slow drying and mixtures
> of various ratios of mineral and silicone are used to finely control
> rates of evaporation.

Interesting. Sounds like this oil should be suitable - but i need to do
some more digging. Thanks DK, and the others who emailed me off-list, for
your very helpful advice.


Tom Anderson, MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, UCL, London WC1E 6BT
(t) +44 (20) 76797264   (f) +44 (20) 76797805   (e) thomas.anderson from

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