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🤖 "Supercritical Water Oxidation – A PFAS Solution"

The Water Values Podcast

Photo by pisauikan | Unsplash

Table of Contents

Host: Dave McGimpsey
Guest: Marc Deshusses | Co-Founder | 374Water
Category: 🤖 Technology | PFAS

Podcast’s Essential Bites:

[7:57] MD: "We're used to thinking of water as being either a solid, a liquid or a gas [...]. There's actually a fourth state of water, which is the supercritical water. When you take water, and you heat it, and you compress it to the extreme, [...] water becomes supercritical. It's a hybrid between gas and liquid. And it's extremely interesting, because water becomes extremely reactive. It also becomes a universal solvents for organics and oxygen. [...] In supercritical water, organics will react extremely fast [...]. And the idea that I was pitching to the Gates Foundation was, let's explore if we can use supercritical water oxidation to treat fecal sludge or the residues of sanitation."

[13:04] MD: "Supercritical water oxidation [...] is best suited for the more concentrated wastes. [...] So we're talking here about those biosolids residues or animal manure that hasn't been diluted with tons of flush water [...] and concentrated chemical waste."

[19:26] MD: "We can take any organics, either primary sludge, secondary sludge, digested sludge after mild dewatering [...] and that can be fed directly into the supercritical water oxidation process. [...] The resulting stream from the [...] process is clean water of distilled quality water and so that can be reused. And then we recovered minerals from the treatments. [...] We recover heat and that heat can be transformed into electricity to run the machine or some heat can be integrated into HVAC for the facility or electricity can be returned back to the grid."

[25:26] MD: "PFAS are very recalcitrant to degradation in the environment and they're bioaccumulative, but also cause trouble at extremely low concentrations. And what we found that is amazing is that supercritical water oxidation actually destroys PFAS. [...] It breaks one of the strongest bonds known in chemistry which is the carbon to fluorine bond and thus thereby releasing the fluorine as fluoride. So we're really mineralizing PFAS, we're destroying the different PFAS resulting in complete treatments."

[31:05] MD: "Supercritical water oxidation is this omni-processor. [...] It will treat any co-contaminants, so not only in all the biosolids and the organics, not only the pathogens, but it will co-treat PCBs (polychlorinated biphenyls), it will co-treat 1,4-Dioxane [...]. It is really a transformative technology in the sense that any waste stream that is being fed, any organics in that waste stream will be destroyed and similarly mineralized."

Rating: 💧💧💧

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🗓️ 09/20/2022
✅ Time saved: 36 min