Celebrating Two Years of SAFF: Continuous Improvement in the Fight Against PFAS

Celebrating Two Years of SAFF: Continuous Improvement in the Fight Against PFAS

Author: Rob Rappold, VP of Business Development


It’s been two years since we started our partnership with OPEC Systems, and its U.S. subsidiary EPOC Enviro, to launch their Surface Active Foam Fractionation (SAFF®) technology in North America. Since then, so much important progress has been made to tackle harmful perfluoroalkyl and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) in our environment. I’m proud to share that SAFF can treat more than 160 million gallons of contaminated water per year.

As SAFF’s capabilities have advanced, so have efforts to regulate these toxic forever chemicals— both at the state and federal levels. More than half of U.S. states have adopted policies to regulate PFAS and another six have introduced such policies. Meanwhile, the EPA has ramped up its planned actions to address PFAS at the federal level, including proposals that would designate nine PFAS as hazardous constituents and create a maximum contaminant level (MCL) for PFAS in drinking water.

SAFF is the first clean, sustainable solution for removing PFAS from contaminated water and concentrating it for destruction. It uses the power of nature in the form of rising air bubbles to rapidly separate harmful PFAS contaminants, concentrating them from 50,000 times up to 3.5 million times and transforming them into a destruction-ready concentrate. This technology contributes zero harm to the environment by using no consumables, minimal energy and labor, and producing no waste other than PFAS hyperconcentrate that is ready for destruction.

Since its 2022 launch in North America, SAFF has been deployed at twelve U.S. sites, performing well in both pilot trials and three permanent installations across industrial, landfill and Department of Defense applications. It has been proven to remove a full spectrum of PFAS, including both long- and short-chain molecules.

Here’s a closer look at some of the other major milestones we’ve achieved in our first two years.


Advancing SAFF to treat long and short-chain PFAS

SAFF technology is continuously improving to advance chemical control and meet the needs of a variety of sites and water types. For example, Allonnia has developed a suite of booster products proven to further enhance SAFF’s capabilities in removing short-chain PFAS. This technology seamlessly pairs with SAFF’s onboard dosing system and is ready to use upon deployment, with no additional hardware required.

Combined with the low cost and easy deployment of SAFF, this technology is a leading choice for landfill sites, airports, military bases, water treatment plants and industry complexes. In fact, SAFF provides the lowest operating cost of any PFAS treatment system available today. This is because SAFF units can be set up within days of an order, requiring only a power lead and connection hoses. Its installation also avoids the need for permanent structures.


The powerful combination of SAFF and destruction tech

One longstanding challenge in removing PFAS is that traditional solutions separate it from water using other media, which then creates another PFAS-contaminated substance to deal with. In the two years since its North American launch, SAFF has emerged as an innovative solution to this problem. SAFF optimizes the power of nature to remove and concentrate PFAS without media, leaving the remaining small amounts of concentrate ready for destruction.

SAFF achieves a high concentration of PFAS, which makes the destruction process easier and more cost-effective. For every one million gallons of groundwater that SAFF treats, it produces less than 100 gallons of concentrated PFAS for destruction.

So far Allonnia has successfully paired SAFF with the following destruction technologies: Aclarity’s EOx, AECOM’s DE-FLUORO™, Aquagga’s HALT™, Onvector’s Plasma Vortex and Revive Environmental’s PFAS Annihilator™.

In fact, SAFF’s ability to pair with destruction tech made it an easy choice for the U.S. Department of Defense’s (DoD’s) Environmental Security Technology Certification Program (ESTCP). As part of a two-year contract, the DoD will use SAFF to treat PFAS-contaminated groundwater. The small volumes of PFAS concentrate generated by SAFF will then be used to test multiple destruction technologies. This project proves it is now possible to separate, concentrate and destroy PFAS efficiently in a fully closed system.


Collaborating to address PFAS

The fight to address PFAS and other emerging contaminants has only grown more urgent since we first launched SAFF in North America. In fact, a recent EPA study estimated that 70 million people are exposed to PFAS in U.S. drinking water. It’s crucial that all key stakeholders work together to tackle this problem, from technology companies like Allonnia to municipalities, industrial players, landfill operators and water treatment facilities.

SAFF offers an effective and sustainable solution to clean up PFAS contamination, enabling sites to not only meet or exceed regulations but to ultimately manage these harmful chemicals and mitigate their impact on both human and environmental health.

Contact us to learn how SAFF can address PFAS contamination at your site.