Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), previously also referred to as per- and polyfluorinated chemicals (PFCs), have entered the environment due to their wide industrial use (e.g. as extinguishing and wetting agents) and represent a particularly problematic group of pollutants due to their high persistence and toxicity. In NRW alone, 120 cases of large-scale groundwater and soil contamination caused by PFAS are currently known.
Remediation or securing of areas with extraction and purification of groundwater is at present very complex and costly because conventional purification processes and systems, e.g. with activated carbon filtering, have a very low effect with regard to PFAS. Landfilling of PFAS-contaminated soils is hardly possible because landfills are at this stage unable to treat the PFAS-contaminated seepage water which results from leaching and, accordingly, do not accept such soils or only do so for very high fees.
With an atmospheric plasma treatment we want to develop an innovative and effective process for the elimination of PFAS from groundwater, seepage water and wash water and thus provide a solution for remediation measures.
The highly mobile pollutant group of PFAS should not only be separated from the resource, rather eliminated as such. Due to this new demand on the remediation target, successful implementation can contribute significantly to the preservation and sustainable use of the valuable resources groundwater and soil as well as the absolutely necessary recycling of contaminated areas (reduction of areaconsumption).