Per‐ and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are a group of manmade environmental contaminants. They have been used since the 1940s for their desirable properties, including ability to repel both oil and water. For this reason, they have been used for industrial applications as well as in consumer products, such as food wrappers, waterproof clothing, cleaning products, and ski wax. Recent studies have shown adverse health effects following exposure to even low concentrations of these chemicals. PFAS are also mobile in the environment and resistant to degradation, so their widespread use has made them a near‐ubiquitous environmental contaminant. The purpose of my project was to evaluate passive sampling techniques for the quantitative monitoring of PFAS in the sediment porewater matrix. This passive sampling technique will make use of a sorbent material to concentrate PFAS inside the sampler, which is important because PFAS is present in the environment in very low concentrations that can be difficult to analytically quantify. Three potential sorbents were tested. Throughout this project, we were able to successfully refine our testing methods in the lab, which will be important for further PFAS studies in the future.
UNH Undergraduate Research Journal
Kevin H. Gardner
Durham, NH: Hamel Center for Undergraduate Research, University of New Hampshire
Kaminski, Alexa, "Evaluation of Methods to Monitro Per‐ and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS)" (2019). Inquiry Journal. 8.