NASA’s Sorbent Polymer Extraction and Remediation System

NASA Kennedy Space Center

Laboratory: NASA Kennedy Space Center

Technology: Sorbent Polymer Extraction and Remediation System (SPEARS)

Opportunity: This NASA-developed environmental technology is available for licensing by interested industry parties through the NASA technology transfer program. 

Details: NASA’s Kennedy Space Center has developed a method that attracts and absorbs polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs). The Sorbent Polymer Extraction and Remediation System (SPEARS) technology is devised of inexpensive plastic spikes that remove PBCs and was created as a method for handling PCB-contaminated sediments. Small amounts of ethanol are placed on the inside of each spike, which aids in driving the movement of PCBs from the sediments into the plastic. The frames of the technology can be hooked together to form large blankets that can be used to remediate larger areas.

Benefits: SPEARS provides an in-situ process that can extract PCBs from submerged sediments without having to remove the sediments, thus eliminating dredging. The process is extremely environmentally friendly, and employs low-cost materials and components that enable either up or down scalability for different applications.

Applications: This technology can be applied to sediment removal areas such as rivers, streams, estuaries, harbors, lakes, canals, and containment ponds. 

Contact: For more information about this technology, contact NASA Kennedy’s Lewis Parrish at

To view NASA’s original web posting and technology marketing sheet, visit

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