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Air Force Demos Water Treatment Plasma Tech

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The U.S. Air Force tested a plasma reactor device designed to degrade and break perfluorooctanoic and perfluorooctane sulfonate acids in groundwater during a field demonstration on Sept. 25.

Clarkson University and GSI Environmental partnered with the Air Force Civil Engineer Center to evaluate the Enhanced Contact Plasma Reactor’s treatment functions for PFOA and PFOS-filled water, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base said Tuesday.

The device uses electrical discharge plasma to degrade PFOA particles and mitigate PFAS molecule chains into smaller elements and compounds without the use of additives and chemicals.

“The argon gas concentrates PFAS at the gas-liquid interface and plasma is generated at that interface, which then destroys PFAS,” said Selma Mededovic, a principal investigator at Clarkson University.

Efforts under the demonstration are in line with the Environmental Protection Agency’s drinking water health advisory and the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation and Liability Act.