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CCWT Recommended for Highly Competitive Department of Energy Grant to Test Novel Treatment Technology to Remove Emerging Contaminants

Thursday, July 11, 2019 - The Center for Clean Water Technology (CCWT) at Stony Brook University, in collaboration with Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory (FNAL), Brookhaven National Laboratory, and the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, has been recommended for an award of $281,000 from the U.S. Department of Energy’s 2019 Accelerator Stewardship Program. The Stewardship program is a highly competitive grant that received requests exceeding four times the available funding this year. The proposal team, led by Dr. Arjun Venkatesan, Associate Director for Drinking Water Initiatives, aims to test a novel electron beam (e-beam) accelerator technology to remove persistent and emerging contaminants including perfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) and 1,4-dioxane from contaminated drinking water.

acceleratorThe NYS Department of Health (NYSDOH) recently adopted maximum contaminant levels (MCLs) for perfluorooctane sulfonate (PFOS) and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) at 10 parts-per-trillion, and for 1,4-dioxane at 1 parts-per-billion. Existing technologies, such as granular activated carbon (GAC) filters and reverse osmosis (RO) systems do not degrade PFAS, but rather concentrate them either by adsorption (GAC) or membrane rejection (RO). The proposed e-beam accelerator technology ( pictured right at the FNAL) can provide opportunities to completely degrade these persistent and toxic chemicals from contaminated waters, and additionally may be utilized to treat concentrated process flows resulting from other water treatment applications (e.g. RO rejects).

The CCWT is also currently leading a pilot program to demonstrate the full-scale application of advanced oxidation processes (AOP) technologies and has been conducting research to understand treatment performance and degradation of 1,4-dioxane in groundwater. The CCWT was also recently awarded NYS Department of Environmental Conservation funding to establish a PFAS testing facility to assess and evaluate the widespread contamination of PFAS in NYS drinking water supplies.