Gas permeability of silicone oil?

peter via (by peter.ianakiev from
Fri Mar 30 11:09:17 EST 2007

On Mar 30, 10:03 am, Tom Anderson <ucga... from> wrote:
> Hi,
> 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.
> I use a silicone oil to reduce evaporation from dishes i'm looking at on
> our inverted scope; my experiments are generally less than an hour long,
> so gas exchange isn't a huge deal, but a colleague wants to do some much
> longer experiments, and we're not sure if the oil i use is suitable.
> My particular oil is a poly(dimethylsiloxane); it's the Dow Corning '200'
> type, via Sigma, of 10 centistokes viscosity. I have absolutely no idea
> what the degree of the polymer is.
> Thanks,
> tom
> --
> Tom Anderson, MRC Laboratory for Molecular Cell Biology, UCL, London WC1E 6BT
> (t) +44 (20) 76797264   (f) +44 (20) 76797805   (e) thomas.ander... from

Hi Tom,
I don't know the answer of the question you asked, but if the
evaporation is an issue, why don't you use humid chamber for long
experiments? I am sure that there are microscopes equipped with small
boxes that keep CO2 and humidity controlled.
my2c, Peter

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