A collection of leaching tests, data management tools, and assessment approaches
The Leaching Environmental Assessment Framework (LEAF) is a collection of leaching tests, data management tools, and leaching assessment approaches developed to identify detailed characteristic leaching behaviors of a wide range of solid materials (e.g., wastes, soils, construction products, etc). Cohesive integration of these components provides materials-specific “source term” release information for support of decisions involving materials management.
LEAF is a collaborative research effort between:
- Vanderbilt University School of Engineering, Nashville, TN
- The Energy Research Centre of the Netherlands, Petten, the Netherlands
- DHI, Horsholm, Denmark
- U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Office of Research & Development and Office of Solid Waste)
Leaching tests are used to characterize fundamental leaching behavior of a subject material through interpretation of test results. In addition, testing under specific release conditions provides a basis for comparison both between materials and between model predictions and testing data. Each of the four leaching tests recommended udner LEAF is designed to vary a critical release-controlling parameter (e.g., pH, liquid-to-solid ratio, leaching time) to provide leaching data over a broad range of test conditions.
Integration of multi-point leaching tests and support of geochemical speciation modeling requires that a large number of data be maintained, displayed and output for reporting support. The LeachXS Lite™ program facilitates data management and test result visualization by providing tools for importing laboratory data from a provided set of Microsoft Excel®-based spreadsheets, creating comparisons of leaching data for different tests or materials, and outputing data to for uniform reporting.
Depending upon the level detail and precision required, LEAF provides for the use of a wide range of assessment approaches from simple empirical relationships to complex reactive transport models based on geochemical speciation of the solid material. Many of these approaches are implemented within the LeachXS family of programs.