The microstructural evolution of polymers induced by ion beam irradiation was investigated using gas permeation measurements with different molecule size gases and positron annihilation spectroscopy (PAS) using variable-energy positron. Simultaneous large increases in gas permeability and permselectivity of polymer-ceramic composite membranes modified by 180 keV H+ ion irradiation indicated that ion irradiation of polymers can modify the microstructure of polymer at sub-nanometer level in a controlled way. PAS results were consistent with the gas permeation results. The results of this work demonstrated ion beam irradiation has a promising application potential in the separation industry.
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