We are pleased to announce that a research paper that outlines the development of a micro-SPE method for the clean-up and pre-concentration of PFASs from surface-water, has been published online in the Journal of Chromatography, a leading peer-reviewed scientific journal that publishes research papers and critical reviews in analytical chemistry, and techniques and methods used for the separation and identification of mixtures.
We would like to congratulate all the co-authors, which included the involvement of senior members of our Research and Development Team, Simon Mills and Dr. Mohammad Talebi.
The complete article with citation details can be viewed on the ScienceDirect site.
PFAS Contamination: A Growing Concern
Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFASs) are a group of synthetic compounds that have been produced commercially since the 1950s and have been identified in recent years as contaminants of concern due to their toxicity, persistent nature and mobility in the environment.
While the manufacture and use of some PFAS, including Perfluorooctane sulphonate (PFOS), have been phased out in many countries, these and related compounds may still be found in imported consumer products or as part of old stock still being used, such as textiles, paper and packaging, non-stick cookware, coatings and cleaning products. PFAS have also been used in firefighting foams and pesticides.
It’s not surprising that there has been growing concern, particularly given the increased media coverage surrounding PFAS discovery. Recently last month, PFAS was identified in samples of fish and water taken near Mackay Airport, in Queensland. Other examples of contamination include Katherine in the Northern Territory, which underwent an extensive investigation in late 2017.
To address these concerns, Envirolab continues to lead in building awareness and being part of the scientific development relating to the identification and laboratory testing of PFAS. Under the research grant awarded in 2017 through the Australian Government’s Cooperative Research Centre Projects (CRC-P) initiative, Envirolab has been working in collaboration with innovation partners, KD Analytical Australia (KDAA) and the University of Tasmania (UTAS), to develop a new technological solution in a field deployable analyser for environmental monitoring of PFAS. Envirolab is also proud to be committed to various other programs that encourage the development and spark interest amongst tomorrow's leaders about science and environmental contamination testing.
Testing for PFAS
Environmental monitoring is used to determine the presence of PFAS at a particular site and to provide information about concentrations and the forms of PFAS at these locations.
Envirolab has been working to further the science around PFAS. Envirolab was an early adopter to the Total Oxidisable Precursor Assay (TOPA), an analytical technique used to determine the presence of precursor PFAS compounds and informs risk management, i.e. PFAS that can chemically and/or biotransform into the persistent PFAS. For example, PFOS, PFHxS and PFOA. Envirolab is also NATA Accredited for testing PFAS in biota, blood and serum, so you have the confidence that you are partnering with a commercial laboratory that will provide you with quality results. Our Capabilities page provides more information about our broad range of laboratory services in environmental contamination testing.
PFAS Testing Supported by a Specialised Team
As the Group R&D Manager, Simon is instrumental in leading and managing research projects to develop and validate methods and formulae, and conducts technical studies relating to the Group's operations in Australia and New Zealand.
Recently, Simon has been leading internal projects on validations and process improvements as well as grant based and private commercial projects relating to environmental contamination testing. More about Simon.
With a background in academia and industry, Mohammad has been involved in various projects at Envirolab, including the successful development of a NATA Accredited SPE-LC-MS/MS methodology for the quantification of 28 PFAS in serum samples, and developing a micro-SPE procedure for rapid and efficient pre-concentration of PFAS in smaller volume water samples.
Mohammad has been involved in workshops on PFAS contamination in groundwater and PFAS measurement and proficiency testing.