What Is Aggregate and Soil Contamination Testing?

The construction industry is constantly looking for new ways to divert waste away from landfill not only to keep costs down but to also meet sustainability targets and UK regulations. 

UK statistics on waste from Defra showed that 58% of landfill tonnage is soil, with the majority of this being removed from building and civil engineering projects.

However, considerations arise when dealing with sites classified as ‘Yellow’ or ‘Red’ according to the British Drilling Association (BDA) guidelines, or when soil materials are found to be contaminated with substances such as asbestos or other hazardous contaminants. The Environmental Agency has estimated that the count of contaminated sites might span from 5000 to 20000 solely across England and Wales. 

Our expert team of engineers and technicians at our UKAS*-accredited Contaminated Materials Testing ‘Red Lab’ are fully equipped to provide both aggregate and soil contamination testing.

* For a full list of our UKAS-accredited activities, please visit our Accreditations and Industry Standards 

Contaminated Testing Laboratory

Aggregate Contamination Testing Services 

At CTS we offer a wide range of aggregate testing including:

  • Sampling – From Stockpiles
  • Methods Of Reducing Laboratory Samples – Using A Riffle Box
  • Methods Of Reducing Laboratory Samples – Reduction By Quartering
  • Methods Of Reducing Laboratory Samples – To A Test Portion Of A Specified Mass Within A Small Tolerance
  • Particle Size Distribution – Sieving Method
  • Flakiness Index
  • Shape Index
  • Percentage Of Crushed And Broken Surfaces In Coarse Aggregate Particles
  • Classification Test For The Constituents Of Coarse Recycled Aggregate
  • Micro-Deval Coefficient
  • Resistance To Fragmentation – Los Angeles Method
  • Resistance To Fragmentation Of Aggregates For Railway Ballast By The Los Angeles Test Method
  • Resistance To Fragmentation Of Coarse Aggregate – Modified Los Angeles Method
  • Loose Bulk Density And Voids
  • Water Content
  • Particle Density And Water Absorption
  • Uniformity Coefficient

Soil Contamination Testing Services

Our specialist team of engineers and technicians are fully equipped to carry out the following soil contamination testing services:

  • Sampling Site Excavated Material – From Heaps
  • Sampling Imported Granular Material – From Stockpiles
  • Sampling Imported Granular Material – From Heaps
  • Moisture Content – Oven Drying Method
  • Saturation Moisture Content Of Chalk
  • Liquid Limit – Cone Penetrometer (Definitive Method)
  • Liquid Limit – Cone Penetrometer (One Point)
  • Plastic Limit
  • Plasticity Index
  • Particle Size Distribution – Wet Sieving
  • Particle Size Distribution – Dry Sieving
  • Particle Size Distribution – Fine Grained Soils (Hydrometer Method)
  • Vertical Deformation And Strength Characteristics By The Incremental Plate Loading Test
  • Calculation Of Equivalent CBR Value Using The Plate Bearing Test
  • Dynamic Cone Penetrometer
  • Particle Density – Gas Jar
  • Bulk Density – By Linear Measurement
  • Dry Density/Moisture Content Relationship
  • Moisture Condition Value (MCV) Relationship
  • MCV – Natural Moisture Content
  • California Bearing Ratio (CBR)
  • Swelling Of Soaked CBR Specimen
  • Chalk Crushing Value
  • Undrained Shear Strength – Triaxial Compression
  • In-Situ Density – Sand Replacement Method (Large Pouring Cylinder)
  • In-Situ Density – Core Cutter Method
  • In-Situ Bulk Density – Nuclear Method
  • In-Situ Moisture Density – Nuclear Method
  • In-Situ California Bearing Ratio (CBR)

Contamination Testing

Using state-of-the-art equipment including specialist HEPA-filtered air extraction facilities and specialist PPE and RPE, along with a custom-built one-off decontamination clean room - all our technicians are trained in contaminated material management.  Our red laboratory allows for safe and sustainable soil contamination testing and grading of known contaminated materials.

Red Laboratory

Why Choose CTS for Contaminated Materials Testing? 

To enable the reuse of materials on the site of origin, or on another site, the Definition of Waste: Development Industry Code of Practice (DoWCoP) requires a Materials Management Plan be produced, this needs to then be reviewed and declared to CL:AIRE by a Qualified Person (QP).
Our geoenvironmental teams within the Phenna Infrastructure Division can help support your project by identifying innovative use of site-won materials. Our colleagues are certified QPs and have a host of experience producing and reviewing Materials Management Plans.

To find out more about our aggregated and soil contamination testing services, please get in touch with a member of the CTS team today, and we’ll be more than happy to answer any questions you may have regarding our services and how we can help you.