We’re continuing our monthly series celebrating inspiring women in the architecture, engineering, and construction (AEC) industry by learning about Senior Staff Environmental Engineer Sarah Van Glubt’s research into the transport of per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS). Recently, Principal Consultant Elie Haddad sat down with Sarah to discuss her doctoral research, which investigated how PFAS transport through soils and groundwater, knowledge of which could inform how to protect human health and the environment. Her findings may help assess the fate and transport of PFAS and manage liabilities at sites such as military bases, airports, wastewater treatment plants, landfills, and industrial and manufacturing sites.
During the conversation, Sarah explains that the overall goal of her research was to gain a greater understanding of PFAS transport in the subsurface by exploring the interactions of PFAS with soils, sediments, air, and co-contaminants. She touches on the specifics of her findings related to non-aqueous phase liquids (NAPLs), which she covered more comprehensively in a recent article for the American Chemical Society’s Environmental Science & Technology journal. Sarah also discusses the effect of air found in unsaturated soils on the transport of PFAS.
To learn more about Sarah’s research and how she thinks future studies should build on it, watch her conversation with Elie below. You can watch this and all of our videos on the Haley & Aldrich YouTube channel.