EarthWorks Environmental Inc.

Mobile Soil Recycling and Remediation Equipment - METS Processors


Our number one task is the manufacture and sale of mobile Soil Recycling and Remediation Equipment for use by environmental professionals. EarthWorks is the designer and manufacturer of ex-situ soil processors that utilize the proprietary Matrix Enhanced Treatment System/METS technology. Our line offers a variety of soil processing/remediation equipment ranging in throughputs of 30 tons to over 300 tons of contaminated soil per hour.

Our smallest version, the 'Eureka 40' processor has a rating of 40 tons of contaminated soil per hour. To date, our company use 'Eureka 40' has been used to successfully treat over 10,000 tons of soil and closed 5 sites. This is the ideal unit for small site situations.

A key objective in the design of our line of remediation process equipment is ease of setup and use. The METS processor is easily moved to and around a project site, and it will work successfully with almost any size loader. Here you can see the  'Eureka 40' next to a medium sized 'Bobcat' loader.

METS Remediation Process Equipment
The current line of EarthWorks-manufactured remediation systems includes four configurations, ranging in processing capacity from 30 to 220 cubic yards of soil per hour. Standard pricing between $78,500.00 and $280,000.00*.

All configurations are based on a similar structural platform, which has been specifically designed for easy transport by trailer or for loading into a standard 20 foot shipping container for long distance deployment. In addition, all configurations are powered by John Deere diesel-powered engines, which provide power for the soil processing mill -- where steady, reliable power is key to thorough treatment of embedded contamination.

All configurations include self-propelled, radio remote-controlled movement (i.e., forward/reverse) and steering. In addition, certain configurations include (standard or extra-cost option) an operator station near one end of the hopper for optimal control and supervision of system operation.

Smaller capacity machines use a 3-wheel configuration for enhanced maneuverability. Larger capacity machines come with optional four wheel steering, perfect for those large projects that require greater maneuverability. In addition, all configurations may be purchased with the optional Soil Trac system in place of wheels, for project situations requiring extra traction on the ground.

Larger capacity machines come equipped standard with a larger hopper opening, in order to accommodate use of big capacity front-end loaders. All configurations come with a speed-adjustable main conveyor system for transporting contaminated soil from the hopper to the soil processing mill. In the larger capacity machines, speed adjustment can be performed from the remote control without having to stop operations.

Except for the Eureka, all configurations come with a second conveyor for attachment beneath the soil processing mill. This conveyor makes it possible to deposit remediated soil in stacks up to eight feet high (six feet for the Coloma). The Empire comes with a second conveyor that is equipped for radial movement, making it possible to build remediated soil stacks to the side as well as to the rear of the processing mill.

The soil processing mill in all configurations comes equipped (standard or extra-cost option) with a Star Wheel bar in addition to the main processing wheel. This design allows the processing mill to operate efficiently in even the most difficult soil conditions and compositions. In the larger capacity machines, this Star Wheel comes equipped (standard or extra-cost option) with its own hydraulic drive system to further boost operating efficiency.

All configurations include multiple remediation fluid injection systems (either dual or triple). This makes it possible to inject more than one remediation treatment formulation (chemical or microbial) into the soil at the same time, or to provide a higher proportional volume of a single formulation, as required for a given contaminant situation.

Finally, the larger capacity configurations come with an optional built-in system for measuring the weight of soil being processed. This makes it possible to accurately track throughput and processing totals by weight rather than, or in addition to, standard volume measurements.

* Please call for price list

METS is a major breakthrough in the science of remediating contaminated soils. METS was designed and developed by EarthWorks Environmental, Inc., after extensive research and testing of other remediation technologies. Most of these predecessor technologies have significant limitations or deficiencies. METS overcomes these limitations and deficiencies to a degree no other commercially available remediation system can match. Nevertheless, METS is comparatively simple in design and application, and is based entirely on proven treatment products and processing components.

Size and mobility: The METS remediation process equipment is approximately the size of a large SUV. It is completely mobile and self-propelled. Setup can be accomplished in a few hours. Working space need only be large enough to accommodate the treatment apparatus, a loader and a place to deposit the treated soil. METS can be employed cost-effectively on projects of all sizes, even in dense, urbanized areas.

Processing capacity: The lines of EarthWorks-manufactured remediation process equipment includes four configurations rate to treat from 40 to 320 tons of soil per hour. No project is too big to be tackled with the METS process. The equipment is so efficient that the only constraint you need to consider is the number and size and loaders required to keep up.

Method of treatment: METS is designed to work with any soluble decontamination reagent or microbial culture that has been suitably prepared and mixed according to our proprietary methods. This flexibility means we can select (working with the property owner and the regulatory agency involved) the most effective and suitable treatment agent for each specific contamination problem, taking into account soil type, soil condition, soil temperature, etc. This flexibility makes it possible for us to guarantee our work.

Treatment results: In the METS process, the contaminants are either destroyed or rendered environmentally inert (by chemical bonding or degradation). Even better, the method by which the reagents are introduced to the contamination produces results more quickly than other methods. In particular, biological treatment is capable of producing desired results in days, not months.

Environmental impact: The METS produces no negative environmental byproducts, no excess heat (there is no thermal process involved), and no hazardous materials or toxic sludge to haul away from the treatment site. The reagent solutions we use do not pose any threat to the environment; they are totally biodegradable. The engine operating the METS equipment produces no more noise or exhaust gases than would a moderate-sized gasoline generator.

How METS Works
The METS remediation process equipment is about the size of a large SUV. It is fully mobile and self-propelled. Previously excavated soil is deposited in the hopper at the top of the apparatus by a conventional front-end loader. Very large debris, such as rock, concrete or asphalt, is usually screened off at the hopper opening. From the hopper, the soil is transferred in a regulated flow to a custom designed processing mill. The mill impacts and shreds the soil, while blending a treatment solution (chemical, biological, or both), along with air and moisture, into the soil using a method that is proprietary to EarthWorks Environmental. The contaminant molecules in the soil are already being degraded or neutralized by the time the soil emerges from the processing mill. The treated soil may be deposited directly to the ground from the mill. However, the apparatus includes a conveyor system at the back end, which may be used to deposit the soil in locations and configurations as desired or to meet site space constraints.

Why METS Works
There is, in nature a wide variability in soil conditions and soil content, even within small distances. This is the principal barrier to effective and efficient remediation of contaminated soil. The METS process is designed to eliminate this variability in the soil while introducing one or more chemical or biological reagent(s) known to degrade and/or neutralize the specific contaminants in that soil. In other words, METS is able to tailor the choice of chemical and/or biological reagent to the specific type and severity of contamination, and to the specific soil conditions at a site. Second, the METS process reduces the soil to a fine particle state in order to maximize access to the contaminant molecules. Third, the METS process ensures the even distribution of the reagent(s) throughout this soil matrix, and the degradation/neutralization is completed before the soil loses its homogenous and fine particulate composition. Finally, to improve speed and efficiency, the METS process creates a relatively high level of air entrainment in the soil, along with a carefully calibrated level of moisture content.

Treatment Agents
METS is designed to work with any chemical reagent or biological product that is or can be delivered in an aqueous solution. The choice of what to use in a given project is determined from analysis of the contaminant or combination of contaminants in the soil, and from analysis of the soil composition, moisture content, pH, etc. For example, commercially available products that are commonly used to degrade hydrocarbons as part of various cleaning and degreasing applications, can be adapted successfully by METS. Other products that can be adapted for METS are based on a chemical principle known as Fenton's Reagent Chemistry. FRC provides for direct oxidation -- release of nascent oxygen -- via an exothermic reaction between a peroxygen and a catalyst. The exothermic reaction as well as oxygen release, dependent upon catalyst, degrades the hydrocarbon molecule to its carbon and hydrogen elements. The nascent oxygen reacts with these elements to form benign compounds (for example, in the case of gasoline, the byproducts are water and carbon dioxide). Chemical reactions based on this chemistry are reliable and predictable, once the proper environment has been created.

Metals (for example, soluble lead) are neutralized by chemical bonding at the molecular level, resulting in byproducts that are stable and benign. METS is also able to apply a variety of products that release cultured microbes proven to degrade and/or neutralize various types of contaminants. In all known cases, these are naturally occurring biological organisms that have been found to thrive in environments where these contaminants have been introduced by man-made events or by natural causes.

Performance and Efficiency
The EarthWorks-manufactured line of remediation process equipment includes four configurations designed to process from 40 to 320 tons of soil per hour. Actual throughout will vary somewhat depending upon soil type, soil condition and moisture content. In many cases, the contaminant has been degraded and/or neutralized almost as soon as it exits the processing mill. In some cases, the degradation process must continue over a period of hours or a few days, to achieve the desired remediation level. When METS relies on a biological product to provide most of the degradation/ neutralization, the process may take longer -- up to a few weeks -- to achieve the desired results.

Health, Safety, Environmental Impacts
There are no significant, negative health, safety, or environmental impacts associated with operation of METS. There are no significant risks, direct or indirect, to the general public as long as the equipment and work site are reasonably secure from unauthorized entrance. Specifically:

  • Chemical Hazard. The chemical and biological products used are biodegradable and environmentally benign. Equipment operators are trained to handle these materials with due care, with the most likely risk if any being direct exposure to themselves before the products are sufficiently diluted. There is no risk to the general public as long as the products are secure from access or tampering.
  • Noise. The soils processing machinery, when operating, produces a noise level comparable to a medium-sized residential gasoline generator. The noise level is typically less than that produced by the loader equipment being used to dump contaminated soil into the machinery. Equipment operators are not required to wear protective hearing devices.
  • Air Pollution. The engine meets current emission control requirements for such equipment.
  • Water Pollution. There is no contact with groundwater during the process (the contaminated soil is already excavated), nor is there any release of chemicals or biological products, diluted or undiluted, into public sewers or storm drains (note: some of these products, in a diluted form, are in fact prescribed for use in cleaning sewers and storm drains). Small amounts of the diluted treatment solution may puddle on the ground as an incidental byproduct of operating the equipment. This liquid quickly evaporates and/or is absorbed into the soil deposited from the remediation process.
  • Fugitive Dust. The process may produce incidental dust as a natural result of the lifting and dumping of soil into the hopper, if the soil is particularly dry. During the process, moisture is added to the soil. As a result there is no dust that results from the action of discharging the remediated soil back to the ground. Remediated soil is in a fine particulate state. When it dries completely, which may take several days, there is the potential for windblown dust off of the soil stockpile. However, that dust is from remediated soil, and should not pose a health hazard.

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