New methods and protocols for the proper monitoring of PFASs in the water environment will be developed, with emphasis on groundwater entering the surface finishing industrial processes and water streams used in this industry (e.g. aquifers, water evaporation tanks used in plating processes).
Surface Enhanced Raman Spectroscopy (SERS) that is based on the utilization of appropriately functionalized Magnetic Nanoparticles (MNPs) will be used for in-situ monitoring of PFAS.
The functionalized MNPs have the ability to absorb PFAS on their surface, increasing locally their concentration and thus, being able to measure them on appropriate magnetic holder with portable RAMAN equipment.
SERS will provide in-situ analysis allowing early warning of a harmful release, saving time and resources and increasing safety compared with lab analysis of field samples being also capable for measuring samples in the region of ppt.
Solutions targeting the capture of PFASs in two type of water streams will be used: on one hand, groundwater deriving from drilled well and, on the other hand, process water coming from internal processes running in the surface finishing facilities (e.g., water from evaporation tanks etc).
The LIFE FOUNTAIN approach is to utilize as absorbents functionalized Magnetic Sponges exhibiting high surface area and high selectivity that will be used for the treatment of contaminated groundwater and process water. The adsorbent magnetic sponges will be regenerated using appropriate solvents in order to be used again.
The captured PFASs on the surface of Magnetic Sponges will be treated with Electrochemical Advanced Oxidation Process (EAOP) technology for their complete decomposition.
This process will allow to safely use the groundwater for surface finishing processes and will also allow to reuse internally water that has already entered the plating processes and has evaporated. This way, the water demand will be decreased contributing thus to a circularity of the water source and minimizing wastewater streams.
The first two phases will be applicated in an industrial environment. More specifically, Gaser TC and PD Service will install two treatment plants based on Magnetic Sponges treatment and with several monitoring points throughout the process in order to eliminate PFASs from the contaminated aquifer water stream and from treated process wastewater.
This way, the proposed technologies will be demonstrated in two different environments and will deal with different sources and concentrations of PFASs: groundwater contaminated with PFASs in the case of Gaser TC and PFAS-contaminated wastewater in the case of PD Service.