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Laboratory data from testing parameters of EPA Method 3060A on Soils Contaminated with Chromium Ore Processing Residue 2013-2016

September 19, 2017

It has been shown that EPA Method 3060A does not adequately extract Cr(VI) from solids containing chromium ore processing residue (COPR). We systematically tested modifications to prescribed parameters of EPA 3060A towards improving extraction efficiency of Cr(VI) from NIST SRM 2701, a standard COPR-contaminated soil from New Jersey (NJ). The alkaline extraction fluid leached Al, Si, and B from the prescribed borosilicate glass vessels which interfered with Cr(VI) extraction from COPR. The use of polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE) vessels increased the extraction efficiency. Intensive grinding of NIST 2701 resulted in the extraction of 73030 mg kg-1 Cr(VI), which is substantially greater than the certified Cr(VI) value of 55135 mg kg-1 but still less than the Cr(VI) value of ~3000 mg kg-1 previously determined by X-ray absorption near edge structure (XANES) spectroscopy. Increasing the extraction fluid to sample ratio also increased the efficiency of Cr(VI) extraction. Ratios similar to the 20 mL g-1 prescribed by 3060A resulted in low and highly variable extraction efficiencies. Ratios of 900 mL g-1 or greater resulted in relatively consistent extraction, yielding as much as ~950 mg kg-1 Cr(VI) from intensively ground NIST 2701 after 2.25 hours of extraction. Increasing the extraction time to 48 hours resulted in up to 1274 mg kg-1.