2020 CPEO Military List Archive

From: Lenny Siegel <lsiegel@cpeo.org>
Date: Fri, 29 May 2020 11:07:56 -0700 (PDT)
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] "Advancements in PFAS-Free AFFF formulations"
[At the SERDP-ESTCP Symposium last December, most of the researchers were talking about fluorine-free formulations. This article uses the term “PFAS-free.” - LS]

Advancements in PFAS-Free AFFF formulations

April 29, 2020

Firefighting formulations used for military operations on Department of Defense (DoD) installations historically contain per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in order to meet the performance requirements of MIL-F-24385F. However, the PFAS in aqueous film forming foam (AFFF) formulations are difficult to degrade and can migrate to groundwater, potentially posing risks to human health and the environment. To manage these risks, the DoD is working to develop alternative PFAS-free fire-suppression methods.  

SERDP and ESTCP have launched a number of projects over the years to research and demonstrate viable replacements for AFFF. Our Principal Investigators are considering many different approaches to new formulations. A snapshot of some of these efforts is captured below.  

Nine proof-of-concept efforts were funded by SERDP in 2017 and 2018. These projects broke ground on testing possible PFAS-free replacements for AFFF. Dr. Joseph Tsang with the Naval Warfare Center Weapons Division tested polysaccharide copolymers and nanoparticles as potential foam components that were expected to be sustainable, non-toxic and water-dispersible. In order to determine ideal components for alternative formulations, Dr. John Payne is broadening our understandings of firefighting foam chemical processes by analyzing the relationships that determine effective surfactant formulation, surface chemistry, foam physical properties, and fire performance.


For the entire blog and links, go to


Lenny Siegel
Executive Director
Center for Public Environmental Oversight
A project of the Pacific Studies Center
P.O. Box 998, Mountain View, CA 94042
Voice/Fax: 650-961-8918

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