Toxicological analysis of ceramic building materials – Tiles and glasses – Obtained from post-treated bottom ashes


Autores: Andreola, F. et Al

In Italy, the production of bottom ash from waste incineration was estimated as 1.6 million tons/year, corresponding to 30% of the total input waste. The bottom ash is mainly formed by SiO2, Al2O3, CaO, Na2O and low amount of heavy metals, therefore it cannot be considered a ‘non-hazardous’ waste. In this context, the aim of this work was to determine the effectiveness of the sintering and vitrification techniques to turn bottom ash into an inert ceramic or glass matrix using toxicological tests. The bottom ash from a municipal solid waste facility was ground and used in ceramic tile and glass compositions. After sintering of the ceramic tiles and melting of the glass compositions, the samples were characterized by leachability and toxicological analyzes. Living organisms were used in the toxicological tests, Escherichia coli and Staphylococcus aureus (Agar Diffusion Test), Artemia sp. (Acute Toxicity Test) and Lactuca sativa (germination) and the results were compared with the plasmid DNA test. Regarding the leachability results, the ceramic tile samples showed a concentration of Cu slightly above the limit determined by the D.M. 5/4/2006 directive and, therefore, could not be considered an inert material. Regarding the toxicological tests, the bottom ash alone is mutagenic, but this effect is avoided once the ash is immobilized into the glasses and ceramic tiles, as demonstrated by the results reported in this study.

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