When a nylon–plasticizer complex is unstable or if the initial concentration of a plasticizer is higher than the equilibrium concentration at the corresponding temperature and pressure, the plasticizer molecules will dissociate with the amides of nylon and diffuse in the nylon matrix. In the process of diffusion, a plasticizer molecule may recombine with other amides and dissociate after some time. Eventually the excess plasticizer molecules will escape from the nylon–plasticizer system. The loss rate of a plasticizer as a function of time is calculated from macroscopic reaction–diffusion kinetics.

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