Electron Beam Technology for Destruction of Short-Chain and Perfluoroalkyl Substances in Groundwater, Wastewater, Sewage Sludges, and Soils
We have previously shown that electron beam (eBeam) technology is effective for defluorination of perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA). In an on-going SERDP project, we are demonstrating that PFOA and PFOS can be completely degraded in a few seconds in aqueous and solid media with eBeam technology. We, therefore, are advancing eBeam technology for PFAS remediation by investigating the utility of eBeam technology as an innovative approach for on-site remediation of short-chain and perfluoroalkyl substances-contaminated groundwater, wastewater effluent, sewage sludges, and soils. The specific objectives are: To characterize and quantify the effectiveness of eBeam technology at degrading short-chain and perfluoroalkyl substances in PFAS-contaminated groundwater, wastewater, sewage sludges and soils Hypothesis: eBeam irradiation will breakdown PFAS concentration in complex environmental matrices under optimized conditions To develop a mechanistic understanding of eBeam-mediated breakdown of short chain PFAS eg., perfluoroheptanoate (PFHpA) in a groundwater and drinking water matrix Hypothesis: Kinetic models and breakdown pathways can explain eBeam-mediated degradation of short-chain PFAS compound such as PFHpA in aqueous media To perform an economic and technology feasibility analyses for a transportable eBeam treatment technology platform for ex-situ PFAS remediation Hypothesis: Economic and technology feasibility analyses will document the cost effectiveness of eBeam treatment technology for ex situ PFAS remediation. The initial focus will be on demonstrating the efficacy of eBeam technology to degrade PFAS compounds in PFAS contaminated groundwater, soils, wastewater and sewage sludges using the full-size eBeam technology facility on Texas A&M University campus. We will then develop a mechanistic understanding of how eBeam breaks down PFAS compound using PFHpA as a model short chain chemical under defined conditions. Finally, the necessary technology and financial feasibility analyses for eBeam-based ex situ PFAS remediation will be performed.