Date of Award

Fall 2006

Project Type


Program or Major

Civil Engineering

Degree Name

Master of Science


Wisely using byproduct materials in beneficial use applications such as highway construction is becoming more important in the United States as virgin materials are depleted and landfill capacity declines. Slags are byproducts of the steel and iron industries found in the Midwestern United States. Historically, many of these materials have historically been used in construction applications, but methods for characterizing their environmental risk are limited. This research considers a series of steps used to identify whether a particular slag poses an environmental or human health risk. The first step involves identifying the appropriate use of the material. The second step involves identifying the site-specific parameters such as precipitation rates and expected pH conditions. The third step involves characterizing the material with a set of leaching procedures that test the material under the range of expected site-specific conditions. The majority of this research focused on this characterization step. The final step involves fate and transport modeling of the appropriate leaching data to identify the ultimate constituent concentrations expected at a receptor. (Abstract shortened by UMI.).