team photo

Figure 1
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Team 7

Team Members

Faculty Advisor

Benjamin Leveille
Noah Herington
Vinh Do

Yu Lei

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Evaluation of In-Situ Technologies to Remediate of Sequester Per- and polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) in Soil

Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a class of synthetic compounds found in many products such as clothes, food packaging, non-stick cookware, and most predominantly, fire-fighting foam. These compounds are known to find their way into water and soil and cause health effects such as cancer, liver damage, decreased fertility, and thyroid disease. PFAS compounds are highly resistant to degradation, heat, and chemical agents due to their chemical structure. While some research has been conducted on remediating PFAS from water samples, removing PFAS from soil remains a challenge, with the currently available soil remediation methods (off-site disposal and incineration) being costly and ineffective. Connecticut Department of Energy and Environmental Protection has given our team the task of evaluating in-situ PFAS soil remediation methods for their viability in bench-top or full-scale implementation and conducting a preliminary study on the most promising methods. We initially reviewed remediation methods that included In-situ Soil Washing, Bioremediation, Soil Liquefractionation, Ball Milling, and Electron Beam Treatment. Our team found that the most testable methods given our resources were Electrochemical Oxidation, Electrokinetic Remediation, and Thermal Degradation under a catalyst. We analyzed the effectiveness of these three methods in removing PFAS from spiked soil samples that match concentrations found in soil at the Cherry Brook Primary School in Canton, Connecticut. With this project, we aim to further the research efforts of the scientific community in finding an implementable PFAS soil remediation technology and help clean PFAS contaminated sites.