Reproducibility of up-flow column percolation tests for contaminated soils
by Tetsuo Yasutaka, Angelica Naka, Hirofumi Sakanakura, Akihiko Kurosawa, Toru Inui, Miyuki Takeo, Seiji Inoba, Yasutaka Watanabe, Takuro Fujikawa, Toshihiko Miura, Shinji Miyaguchi, Kunihide Nakajou, Mitsuhiro Sumikura, Kenichi Ito, Shuichi Tamoto, Takeshi Tatsuhara, Tomoyuki Chida, Kei Hirata, Ken Ohori, Masayuki Someya, Masahiko Katoh, Madoka Umino, Masanori Negishi, Keijiro Ito, Junichi Kojima, Shohei OgawaUp-flow column percolation tests are used at laboratory scale to assess the leaching behavior of hazardous substance from contaminated soils in a specific condition as a function of time. Monitoring the quality of these test results inter or within laboratory is crucial, especially if used for Environment-related legal policy or for routine testing purposes. We tested three different sandy loam type soils (Soils I, II and III) to determine the reproducibility (variability inter laboratory) of test results and to evaluate the difference in the test results within laboratory. Up-flow column percolation tests were performed following the procedure described in the ISO/TS 21268–3. This procedure consists of percolating solution (calcium chloride 1 mM) from bottom to top at a flow rate of 12 mL/h through softly compacted soil contained in a column of 5 cm diameter and 30 ± 5 cm height. Eluate samples were collected at liquid-to-solid ratio of 0.1, 0.2, 0.5, 1, 2, 5 and 10 L/kg and analyzed for quantification of the target elements (Cu, As, Se, Cl, Ca, F, Mg, DOC and B in this research). For Soil I, 17 institutions in Japan joined this validation test. The up-flow column experiments were conducted in duplicate, after 48 h of equilibration time and at a flow rate of 12 mL/h. Column percolation test results from Soils II and III were used to evaluate the difference in test results from the experiments conducted in duplicate in a single laboratory, after 16 h of equilibration time and at a flow rate of 36 mL/h. Overall results showed good reproducibility (expressed in terms of the coefficient of variation, CV, calculated by dividing the standard deviation by the mean), as the CV was lower than 30% in more than 90% of the test results associated with Soil I. Moreover, low variability (expressed in terms of difference between the two test results divided by the mean) was observed in the test results related to Soils II and III, with a variability lower than 30% in more than 88% of the cases for Soil II and in more than 96% of the cases for Soil III. We also discussed the possible factors that affect the reproducibility and variability in the test results from the up-flow column percolation tests. The low variability inter and within laboratory obtained in this research indicates that the ISO/TS 21268–3 can be successfully upgraded to a fully validated ISO standard.
Publisher URL: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article
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