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Sarah (Xiao) Wu Wins Second Place in EPA’s Innovative Ways to Destroy PFAS Challenge

December 11, 2022

Sarah (Xiao) Wu, assistant professor of engineering, tied for second place in EPA’s challenge for her concept using a continuous flow liquid-phase plasma discharge process to destroy per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in aqueous film forming foam (AFFF). The goal is to discover new technologies and approaches that have the potential to remove at least 99% of PFAS in unused AFFF without creating harmful byproducts. This challenge focused on unused AFFF because of its high concentration of PFAS and widespread use to fight fires. Given the ubiquitous nature of PFAS, EPA and its partners are looking for greater certainty when making decisions about disposal and treatment of PFAS containing materials and PFAS contaminated media/waste.

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