Immobilisation of metals in contaminated landfill material using orthophosphate and silica amendments: a pilot study

Danielle Camenzuli, Damian B. Gore, Scott C. Stark

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    Immobilization and encapsulation of contaminants using silica and orthophosphate based chemical treatments are emerging technologies applicable to the management of metal contaminated soil. While the efficacy of orthophosphate treatment is well documented, there is a paucity of research on the application of silica or coupled orthophosphate and silica chemical treatments to metal contaminated soil. This paper presents a pilot scale bench study on the use of silica and coupled orthophosphate-silica treatments for the immobilization of metal contaminants in soil material obtained from the Thala Valley landfill, East Antarctica, which in places has petroleum hydrocarbons mixed with metal-contaminated sediment. The performance of the treatments trialed was assessed by the concentrations of copper, zinc, arsenic and lead released using the Toxicity Characteristic Leaching Procedure. The results of this pilot study demonstrate that the orthophosphate-silica treatment was the most effective and reduced leachable copper, zinc and lead by 95%, 96% and 99%, respectively, relative to the experimental controls. Further development of this technique will require additional research evaluating its long-term performance under a range of environmental conditions. Studies investigating potential adverse effects of silica and orthophosphate-silica treatments are also necessary, to demonstrate the environmental risk and efficacy of these remediation technologies.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)27-32
    Number of pages6
    JournalInternational journal of environmental pollution and remediation
    Publication statusPublished - 2015

    Bibliographical note

    Copyright the Author(s) 2015. Version archived for private and non-commercial use with the permission of the author/s and according to publisher conditions. For further rights please contact the publisher.


    • contamination
    • remediation
    • silica
    • orthophosphate
    • landfill
    • chemical fixation


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