HR Excellence in research Unia Europejska
HR Excellence in research Unia Europejska

Laboratory of Environmental Research

Laboratory of Environmental Research

Environmental Research Laboratory specializing in field and laboratory research on the pollution of groundwater, surface water, soil, land and the quality of waste or sewage. Here, field and laboratory tests are carried out to determine the content of metals and heavy metals and metalloidal components in the soil and water environment and the leachability of components using static and dynamic tests. The laboratory conducts research in the field of inorganic pollutants, groundwater, surface water, soil and land, with particular emphasis on mercury. The results of the research work are used to monitor the impact of municipal and industrial waste landfills and the surroundings of communication routes, as well as the impact of various industrial facilities on the natural environment.

Scope of research and analysis

The Environmental Research Laboratory carries out statutory research and research that is part of research and service work for business entities, government and local government units, including:

  • collection and analysis of environmental samples for the purposes of scientific research, monitoring as well as research and service work,
  • studies on the leaching of pollutants (static and dynamic tests) in the scope of conducted scientific studies and environmental analyses,
  • research on water and soil pollution (in the field of inorganic compounds) as part of statutory research and monitoring studies for business entities and local government units,
  • studies of mercury vapor sorption on solid sorbents.

Thanks to the equipment we have, the following are also performed:

  • expert opinions and monitoring studies of the impact of landfills,
  • studies of mercury pollution in the vicinity of communication routes and areas of impact of industrial facilities,
  • environmental impact assessment of contaminated sites and pollutant migration studies,
  • studies of the processes of industrial facilities impact on the environment,
  • research and assessment of hazards related to waste management, including waste from the mining sector and asbestos-containing waste.

Laboratory equipment

The Environmental Research Laboratory is equipped with equipment and apparatus including:

  • AMA-254 spectrometer, dedicated to the determination of mercury in liquid and solid samples of various origins (water, sewage, waste, soil, soil), without the need to pre-mineralize the samples,
  • spectrophotometric devices (UV-VIS) for quantitative analysis of pollutants in groundwater and surface waters,
  • equipment for the collection and preliminary preparation and analysis of environmental samples in field conditions,
  • apparatus and devices for the preparation of solid and liquid samples (homogenization, mineralization, preparation of water extracts in an acid and neutral environment, fractional analysis of samples using the dry method),
  • mercury vapor research system – SPBR-1 – semi-automatic prototype research installation designed for mercury vapor generation, gas temperature stabilization, flow control, pressure and temperature registration as well as mercury concentration.

Results and directions of the use of research works

The activity of the environmental research laboratory is focused on research in the field of inorganic chemistry of environmental samples. The tests are conducted for liquid samples (groundwater, surface water, leachate, sewage, rainwater) and solid samples (soil, soil, waste), and their aim is to assess the degree of environmental pollution in the tested area. In particular, research equipment is used to measure the impact of pollutants on the environment, especially in the field of migration of pollutants from the municipal and industrial sectors. The results of the analyses are used in statutory research in the field of soil and water contamination caused by the influence of anthropogenic factors. The obtained results are also used in the publications purposes. The research equipment is mainly used in the monitoring of the soil and water environment in the vicinity of landfills and in the study of waste quality parameters in the process of searching for new solutions for their management.

The prototype installation for mercury sorption testing, owned by the Division of Applied Geochemistry and Environmental Engineering, was created as a result of the implementation of the project entitled: “Use of energetic waste materials to capture gaseous forms of mercury from exhaust gases” and is used for the purposes of works carried out in this laboratory. Currently, it is being expanded with a gas desorption system as part of the project entitled “Physicochemical modification of natural and synthetic zeolites: how it affects the mechanisms and interactions with elemental mercury in a polluted gas stream”.