The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency has completed initial tests on a field-deployable system that combines technologies from the Southwest Research Institute and PyroGenesis Canada to neutralize chemical warfare agents.
DARPA said Friday it tested SwRI’s soil-scrubbing technology alongside PyroGenesis’ Tactical Plasma Arc Chemical Warfare Agents Destruction System that works to collect and convert toxic CWA decomposition products into non-hazardous salts.
The platform is built through DARPA’s Agnostic Compact Demilitarization of Chemical Agents program.
SwRI said that the resulting modular unit can be deployed depending on the availability of resources at a specific location and support both dry and wet pollution abatement configurations.
NRT Methodologies and the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory independently verified and validated the effectiveness of the ACDC soil scrubber and PACWADS.
“It is in our national interest to have a field operable unit that can safely dispose of chemical warfare agents and other dangerous chemicals on the front lines in a timely manner,” said Darrel Johnston, senior program manager at SwRI’s chemistry and chemical engineering division.
DARPA plans to test the system against actual CWAs in the coming months and integrate the platform into a standard military vehicle.