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  • Writer's pictureCaroline Winter

EPA Developing and Demonstrating Nanosensor Technology to Detect, Monitor, and Degrade Pollutants

Opportunity Title:

Developing and Demonstrating Nanosensor Technology to Detect, Monitor, and Degrade Pollutants

Opportunity Number:



Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) are long-lasting chemicals that are widely used in an array of consumer, commercial, and industrial products. Due to widespread use and persistence in the environment, PFAS are commonly found in air, soil, and water. There is evidence that continued exposure to certain PFAS, even at low levels, can cause harmful health effects. Measuring PFAS at low levels is a challenge with current analytical methods. In addition, PFAS are incredibly difficult to degrade, and traditional methods often cannot degrade PFAS or produce a toxic waste stream.

Advances in nanoscience and nanotechnology have the potential to address the major challenges of conventional technology for the detection and treatment of PFAS-contaminated waters. Nanoparticles have been introduced for the detection and remediation of a wide range of contaminants in different matrices. Because of their unique properties, nanomaterials have enabled advances in sensor design such as miniaturization, portability, and rapid signal response times. Nanomaterial-enabled sensors are being designed for efficiency, flexibility, and multipollutant sensing applications. Nanotechnology may help to build better environmental sensors by reducing cost, improving efficiency and increasing selectivity. In addition to detection and monitoring, nanotechnology can also be used in the sequestration and degradation of pollutants. Nanomaterials have advantages to conventional treatment methods, such as smaller size, larger specific surface area, and are easily manipulated and dispersed in water. The growing focus on removing low levels of PFAS contamination from drinking water supplies has produced several PFAS-removal approaches. However, the carbon-fluorine (C-F) bond in PFAS is extremely strong, making complete destruction difficult, and there are uncertainties around the effectiveness of traditional destruction technologies (e.g., thermal treatment) for PFAS. The next generation of high-performance separation and degradation technologies are needed for the safe and cost-effective removal and destruction of PFAS.


Public and private nonprofit institutions/organizations, public and private institutions of higher education (IHEs), and hospitals located in the U.S. and its territories or possessions; state and local governments; Federally Recognized Indian Tribal Governments; and U.S. territories or possessions are eligible to apply.

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Application Deadline:

October 4, 2023

Grant Management Associates has years of experience with opportunities like this one. Contact us today for a consultation.

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