Scientists: new way to get ‘forever chemicals’ linked to cancer out of our water

Photo: Clarkson University professors Tom Holsen and Selma Mededovic in front of a plasma reactor. Clarkson University

They’re in the bloodstreams of 99% of Americans.

  • Researchers at Clarkson University are working with the US Air Force to remove a group of "forever chemicals" from water.
  • The chemicals, known as PFAS, have been associated with cancer, liver damage, and developmental issues.
  • They’re found in food packaging, cookware, outdoor gear, and firefighting foam.
  • The researchers found a way to zap the chemicals in a plasma reactor, effectively destroying the bond that allows them to stay in the body for life.

More than 70 years ago, a group of chemicals known as PFAS promised to make people’s lives easier and more efficient. The category of chemicals — whose full name is per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances — was developed in the 1940s to resist heat, grease, stains, and water. That made them ideal coatings for food packaging, paper plates, and cookware.

They were also used as firefighting foam for military training exercises and emergency responses starting in the 1970s.

But since then, scientists have uncovered links between PFAS and cancer, liver damage, thyroid disease, and developmental issues. Today, the chemicals are […]

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Scientists: new way to get 'forever chemicals' linked to cancer out of our water
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Scientists: new way to get 'forever chemicals' linked to cancer out of our water
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Researchers at Clarkson University are developing a way to destroy "forecer chemicals" (PFAS) in groundwater using plasma reactors to sever chemical bonds.
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Business Insider
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