Santa Clara, Calif.-based Agilent Technologies, in conjunction with the China National Environmental Monitoring Center (CNEMC), has developed a method to detect and identify perfluorinated compounds (PFCs) in water and soil using high-performance liquid chromatography/mass spectrometry (HPLC/MS). PFCs are routinely used in a variety of commercial products to repel oil, grease and water. Scientists are especially concerned because the most pervasive and toxic PFCs, unlike other toxic chemicals, never degrade in the natural environment. The CNEMC selected Agilent to help develop the PFOS/PFOA analysis method, which identifies the PFCs perfluorooctanesulfonic acid and perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOS and PFOA). The Chinese government will study PFOA and PFOS as part of its National High Technology Research and Development Program. The test samples and method were developed at Agilent’s Beijing Center of Excellence.