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 articlepeer-review

223 Scopus citations


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
Issue number2
StatePublished - Mar 2008


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

ASJC Scopus subject areas

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


Dive into the research topics of 'A review of chemical warfare agent simulants for the study of environmental behavior'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this