Moisture content of landfills: Testing to Simulate Landfills

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BioSphere Plastic tests their product with 52-55% solids content and 45-48% moisture content, We also simulate drier landfills at 20 and 40% moisture content and 60-80% solid contents. Typical landfills are around 35% moisture content with premium biodegradation at 45% moisture content.

Typical landfill moisture and solids content range from site to site within a landfill as seen by studies performed by (Mehta, et al. 2002) in the State of California. The ranges varied between 38.8% moisture content to 31.7% moisture content. Other studies have been tested before and after circulation to be 31.3% before and 45.7% moisture content after circulation (Townsend, et al 1996) the samples varied depending on the distance that the samples were taken from the pond.

Bioreactor landfills are operated at a minimum of 40% moisture content or the Bioreactor landfill will no longer be considered a Bioreactor landfill. Increased moisture is necessary, but not required.

What this means for you

It is important to test either as a simulation of a landfill using the ASTM D5511-12 method with high solids content( Eden Labs ), or testing to the ASTM D5526. The ASTM D5526 testing method has three testing tiers one at 20%, one at 40%, and one at 60% moisture content (80,60,40 Solids content). This gives you a three tier approach on solids content and the varying rate of biodegradation. The ASTM D5526 method is performed under 35C which is extremely low temperatures and is not up to par with many landfills internationally nor landfills found in the United States. The ASTM D5511-12 is performed under 52C +-1C, this is under the Federal limit of operational landfills.

We combine these testing methods and protocols with scientific protocols developed by Eden Research Labs to test for simulated landfill conditions. The ASTM D5511-12 testing method is modified to react as a simulated landfill with various moisture/solid contents. This allows for a wide range of testing that will be applicable for all landfills located in the United States and Internationally. By testing to this protocol, you will have third party scientific evidence that your product will biodegrade in a landfill environment whether it is located in a high moisture or low moisture landfill.

We also test our products based on the EPA 8015, this shows that the products are completely returning to nature and only elements in nature are left behind. This shows that our products truly do enhance the biodegradation of plastic, unlike oxo-degradable plastics which are broken down into small pieces under sunlight.

For more information regarding BioSphere plastic additives please contact us at [email protected]


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