Practical technologies for Perfluoroalkyl (PFA) remediation in marine fish hatcheries
- Solution providers, innovators, research providers and policy makers to build on outputs of research into practical technologies for Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) remediation in marine fish hatcheries
Industry challenge: Perfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) are proven endocrine disrupting chemicals for fish and can cause a reduction in fecundity as well as deformity, abnormal development, and increased mortality of larvae. There is an opportunity to optimise filtration methodology to ensure that water quality maintenance is cost-effective and enduring.
There are currently several technologies available for PFAS remediation including, activated carbon, ion exchange, foam fractionation combined with ozone (i.e. ozofractionation) and specific filtration with adsorbent materials. These are variously suitable for freshwater applications. The two approaches showing the greatest promise for seawater, in which PFASs react differently to that observed in freshwater, are fractionation and adsorbent materials in specialised filters. These technologies exist in some form in many aquaculture systems and could be optimised for PFAS extraction.
As testing for PFAS continues there is the expectation that the number of facilities affected in Australia, and indeed globally, will increase.
Opportunity background: Foam fractionation was found to be effective in removing significant quantities of PFAS from seawater. If not already found in many aquaculture facilities, foam fractionators are comparatively cheap, readily available and scalable. They are simple to use and install and they are adjustable to increase PFAS removal efficiency.
Ozone is currently commonly used in aquaculture facilities to disinfect seawater and has been shown to offer advantages in PFAS removal. However, care is required in using ozone in aquaculture systems and further research is needed to safely optimise ozone use. This project has highlighted many of the variables to be considered when operating foam fractionators that could improve PFAS removal efficiency, but a larger longer term project would be required to fully evaluate their beneficial use.
Current opportunity: Fisheries Research and Development Corporation (FRDC) is seeking engagement from organisations that have potential innovative solutions, research project ideas, novel approaches to build upon outputs of the work described above. 'Enquire now' to discuss potential approaches with FRDC.
Read more about this opportunity here: Australian aquaculture is brimming with opportunities
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