Alex Korff

Technical Sales Director, Höganäs Environment Solutions

Alex Korff is a Product Development Engineer with Höganäs Environment Solutions, LLC (HES) with a background in environmental treatment systems. His focus at HES is on iron media product and process applications, as well as, compound specific treatability. Alex has helped to develop the ever-expanding HES soil remediation product portfolio and has worked to optimize water treatment systems.

Before starting with HES, Alex spent several years as an engineer and researcher at the EPA facility in Research Triangle Park, North Carolina. He is the co-author on multiple EPA reports, sampling methods, and remediation investigations. At EPA-RTP, Mr. Korff was a project manager for research projects concentrated on chemical/biological warfare agent, pesticides, and toxic industrial compound (TIC) remediation in indoor and outdoor environments.

Before his shift into research and development, Mr. Korff spent some time in environmental consulting. Mr. Korff earned a B.S. and M.S in Environmental Engineering from Missouri University of Science and Technology. His thesis was on the treatability of chlorinated solvents with an enriched co-metabolic sludge and dehalococcoide consortium with a series of silicone hollow-fiber membrane bioreactors.

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Test of ZVI based Water Treatment System for Removal of Complex Selenium in Groundwater

The state of Colorado is renowned for its unique geology, but one lesser known feature is the high prevalence of naturally occurring selenium in soils and aquifers. This feature, combined with a relatively high seasonal water table, leads to an issue of satisfying selenium discharge regulations (4.6 – 5 ppb) for construction projects, remediation, and subterranean (i.e. foundation or basement) dewatering. Höganäs Environment Solutions (HES) has developed an innovative zero valent iron media, Cleanit®-LC Plus, which has a high capacity for removing various species of selenium, including selenate and selenite. Additionally, the efficiency of Cleanit media is not affected by competing ions such as sulfate, which are often prevalent in water treatment applications. The Cleanit ZVI media is unique in its ability to reduce selenate (the most challenging species) to more manageable reduced species (e.g. selenite), which are then strongly adsorbed on the media. HES utilized its extensive laboratory capabilities to run bench tests which optimized the pilot design for this project. A fully automated pilot unit was deployed for two weeks, and the test results were used to optimize the design of a full scale system. The pilot unit is designed to have a small footprint while retaining flexibility for treating a variety of metal and metalloid contaminants. The unit is designed to operate at a flow rate between 0.5 and 2.5 GPM depending on the target contaminant. It is fully automated and can be monitored remotely – only an internet connection and electrical service are required. During the pilot study, the Cleanit media had superior performance when compared to conventional adsorbents and resins in terms of both capacity, and ability to treat to near non-detect levels. The full-scale system will be installed to treat a stream of 30 GPM.

Treatment of Coal Combustion Residual Liquids for Heavy Metals Using Surface-modified Engineered Iron Media

From the late 1880s until the early 2000’s, coal was used as the primary fuel for electricity generation in the United States. Due to this widespread use, it is no surprise then that coal ash is the second-most abundant waste material in the U.S. As coal-based plants are converted or decommissioned, the need to address soil and groundwater contamination of from coal combustion residuals (CCRs) is a growing concern across the power industry. CCR cleanup can be especially challenging due to the high cost of removing arsenic, lead, molybdenum, and especially selenium, that are present at most sites.

Höganäs Environment Solutions’ (HES) Cleanit®-LC process is an innovative iron-based process for cost-effective removal of selenium and mixed metals from CCR waste streams in a single step. The Cleanit-LC process simultaneous reductive based chemistry couple with physical adoption to remove aqueous phase contamination. The iron based media is manufactured from recycled iron material, hydroelectric power, and can be recycled back into future metal powders in a completely green process.

HES’s engineering team has designed the Cleanit-LC process systems to be both flexible and scalable, ranging from <1 gpm to >5,000 gpm for either fixed of mobile applications. Selenium and other target contaminants can be treated to non-detect levels with empty bed contact times ranging from 3-30 minutes depending on target and water chemistry while requiring reconditioning only every 2-3 weeks. Media life can last from 6 months out to 2 years (or longer) depending on incoming water quality and discharge requirements. Additionally, Cleanit-LC Plus media experiences little to no interference in the presence of competing ions such as sulfates, phosphates, and nitrates.