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Steel Slag Used In Landfill Cover Liners: Laboratory And Field Tests

Inga Herrmann, Lale Andreas, Silvia Diener, Lotta Lind

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Stricter rules for landfilling within the EU have led to the closure of many landfills and a need for large amounts of cover liner materials. Therefore, the potential utilization of mixtures of electric arc furnace slag (EAFS) and ladle slag (LS), which are currently deposited in landfills, as a material for use as landfill liner was investigated. Laboratory analyses showed the mixtures to have similar compression strength to that of high-strength concrete and low hydraulic conductivity (< 10-11 m s-1 in some cases). However, both their hydraulic conductivity and compaction properties were strongly affected by the time between adding water to the mixtures and compacting them (tests showed that a delay of 24 h can lead to an increase in hydraulic conductivity, so it should be compacted as soon as possible after mixing the material with water). In addition, the performance of a cover liner constructed using EAFS and LS was studied in a 2-year field trial on a landfill for municipal solid waste, in which the average amount of leachate collected from ten lysimeters was only 27 L m-2 year-1, easily meeting Swedish criteria for the permeability of covers on non-hazardous waste landfills (≤50 L m-2 year-1). Thus, the material seems to have promising potential for use in barrier constructions.