Per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are recalcitrant and potentially toxic chemicals that have contaminated many water sources after decades of uncontrolled use in a broad range of applications e.g. coatings and firefighting. This project aims to deliver a ready-to-deploy and scalable modular technology that is capable of removing PFAS from a variety of water sources, including groundwater and surface waters, to make them virtually PFAS-free and therefore safe for human consumption. The concept draws on recent advances in water treatment and electrochemistry and is based on ion exchange, nanofiltration and advanced oxidation. A risk-based framework will be developed to deliver fit-for-purpose solutions at minimal cost for stakeholders and taxpayers.

Collaborators  

  • Airservices Australia
  • GHD
  • Queensland Health
  • Urban Utilities

Project Outcomes 

  • 2020 GHD Chairman’s award for Technical Excellence

Publications

Conference presentations:

  • M.L. Veciana, J. Bräunig, M.L. Pype, G. Carvalho, J. Keller and P. Ledezma. 2021. A critical revisit of the electrochemical oxidation of PFASs in water using boron-doped diamond electrodes: role of sulfate radicals in enhanced kinetics and the overlooked importance of adsorption. Emerging Contaminants in the Environment Conference (ECEC21). April 27-28, 2021.

Poster presentations:

  • N. Rossi, K. Doederer, G. Carvalho, J. Bräunig, P. Ledezma, M.-L. Pype. 2021. Per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) removal using nanofiltration (NF) membranes: importance of steady-state and operating conditions. FLUOROS Global 2021 Conference. October 3-7, 2021.
     

Project members

Mr Pablo Ledezma

Research Fellow
Australian Centre for Water and Environmental Biotechnology

Dr Gilda De Sousa Carvalho Oehmen

Senior Lecturer
Australian Centre for Water and Environmental Biotechnology

Ms Mersabel Veciana

Research Scholar

Ms Natascha Rossi

Research Scholar