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PFAS Analytical Services

Soils and Biosolids

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PFAS in Soils and Biosolids

We offer analysis of soil and biosolids (dried sludge from waste-water treatment plants, often applied as fertilizer to farms) samples contaminated with PFAS using ASTM D7979-17.  

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In-House Method

Soil samples are prepared by an in-house method we developed and reported in 2005, which has become the basis for many environmental analytical PFAS methods. The method utilizes a rapid sample purification procedure to remove matrix components sufficiently so that errors due to coeluting matrix peaks are negligible and recoveries of PFAS are consistently and reproducibly quantitative. Extracts from solid samples (soil and sediment) and liquid bacterial sludge are purified using dispersive solid-phase extraction. Recovery values generally are in the 70-120% range. The method utilizes an extraction solvent previously shown to release and recover aged residues of PFASs.

Water Treatment Plant Data

Here are some biosolids data from two different wastewater treatment plants.  Note that long chain PFAS compounds (10 or more carbon units) are readily detected, even though they are rarely detected in water.  Reason: partitioning into organic matter increases with chain length.

Data chart with 3 columns and 14 rows.
data in units of ng per g
Column 1 is Compound	
Column 2 is Site 1	
Column 3 is Site 2
PFBS 	0.2	23
PFHxA 	2.0	47
PFHpA 	0.3	3.0
PFHxS 	0.6	1.0
PFOA 	2.4	13
PFOS 	12	13
PFNA 	1.5	3.0
PFDA 	5.7	14
NMeFOSAA 	3.4	19
PFUnA 	0.7	1.7
NEtFOSAA 	1.4	5.9
PFDoA 	1.2	4.5
PFTrA 	0.2	0.3
PFTA 	0.3	0.7