A review of chemical warfare agent simulants for the study of environmental behavior

Shannon L. Bartelt-Hunt, Detlef R.U. Knappe, Morton A. Barlaz

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

134 Scopus citations

Abstract

There is renewed interest in the environmental fate of chemical warfare agents attributable to the intensified threat of chemical weapons use in a terrorist attack. Knowledge of processes that influence the fate of agents such as distilled mustard, lewisite, tabun, sarin, soman, and VX in the environment is important for development of disposal strategies and for risk and exposure assessments. However, it is often necessary to conduct studies examining chemical agent behavior using simulants due to the toxicity of the agents and usage restrictions. The objective of this study was to review the physical-chemical properties and mammalian toxicity of compounds that can be used to simulate chemical agents and to identify the most appropriate compounds to simulate specific environmental fate processes, including hydrolysis, sorption, bioavailability, and volatilization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)112-136
Number of pages25
JournalCritical Reviews in Environmental Science and Technology
Volume38
Issue number2
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2008

Keywords

  • Microbial degradation
  • Partition coefficient
  • Simulant
  • Toxicity
  • Warfare agent

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Environmental Engineering
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Waste Management and Disposal
  • Pollution

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