FY 2020 STATEMENT OF NEED
Environmental Restoration (ER) Program Area
The objective of this Statement of Need (SON) was to develop improved forensic methods and tools for source tracking and allocation of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Specifically, the goal was to address the following research needs:
- Evaluation of conventional or novel analytical techniques or methodologies to differentiate PFAS from aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) versus non-AFFF sources.
- Develop spectral libraries of PFAS to include both AFFF-derived PFAS as well as PFAS derived from other sources.
- Improved analytical methods and/or validated models to predict changes to AFFF mixtures over time, including chemical pathways to the most toxic compounds.
The projects listed below were selected to address the objectives of this SON. Additional information on individual projects can be found by clicking the project title.
- Comprehensive Forensic Approach for Source Allocation of PFAS
- Lead Investigator: Christopher Higgins, Colorado School of Mines
- Establishing an Approach to PFAS Forensics and a PFAS Source Materials Forensic Library
- Lead Investigator: Mark Benotti, NewFields Government Services
- Machine Learning Pattern Recognition for Forensic Analysis of Detected PFAS in Environmental Samples
- Lead Investigator: Tohren Kibbey, University of Oklahoma
- Ultrahigh-Resolution Fourier-Transform Ion Cyclotron Resonance Mass Spectrometry for Fingerprinting, Source Tracking, and Allocation of PFAS
- Lead Investigators: Jens Blotevogel, Colorado State University
- A Simple and Robust Forensic Technique for Differentiating PFAS Associated with AFFF from other PFAS Sources
- Lead Investigator: David Sedlak, University of California, Berkeley
- Improving Access and Utility of Analytical Data for the Confident Discovery, Identification, and Source-Attribution of PFAS in Environmental Matrices
- Lead Investigator: Benjamin Place, National Institute of Standards and Technology
Research should lead to a more viable path for the development of PFAS forensic tools at DoD sites. This will in turn help DoD remedial program managers assess the nature and extent of PFAS contamination related to DoD releases, as well as the potential liability associated with those releases.