My research interests have focused on inorganic contaminants (radionuclides, metals and metalloids) introduced into terrestrial and aquatic environments as a result of technological activities such as nuclear fuel production, coal combustion, and vehicle usage. Investigations have been driven by concerns focused on both human and ecosystem health, and have included:
• characterization of host phases of such contaminants in solid-waste forms, and in soils and sediments exposed to such contaminants as a result of air or water contact;
• mobilization of such contaminants by the physiological activities of microorganisms, and higher plants & animals.
Materials and environments of particular focus have been:
• uranium mill tailings, naturally occurring radioactive materials, and low-level radioactive waste;
• traffic-derived contaminants and their impacts on watershed soils and storm water ponds.
In parallel with these research activities in environmental science, I have maintained a continuing interest in environmental history, and the interface between science and the broader human community. Work in this realm has focused on the radium extraction industry, color description in the natural sciences, depictions of soils in motion pictures, and the development of soil science research in the United States during the 1890-1930 era. Co-editor of Soil and Culture (Springer 2010) and The Soil Underfoot: Infinite possibilities for a finite resource (CRC Press, 2014).
Landa, E. R., 1978, The retention of metallic mercury vapor by soils: Geochimica et Cosmochimica Acta, v. 42, p. 1407-1411.
Landa, E. R., 1982, Radium--the first nuclear industry: Scientific American, v. 247, no. 5, p. 180-193.
Landa, E. R., Miller, C. L. and Updegraff, D. M., 1986, Leaching of 226Ra from uranium mill tailings by sulfate reducing bacteria: Health Physics, v. 51, p. 509-518.
Lovley, D. R., Phillips, E. J. P., Gorby, Y. A., and Landa, E. R., 1991, Microbial reduction of uranium: Nature, v. 350, p. 413-416.
Landa, E. R., Phillips, E. J. P. and Lovley, D. R., 1991, Release of 226Ra from uranium mill tailings by microbial Fe(III) reduction: Applied Geochemistry, v. 6, no. 6, p. 647-652.
Landa, E. R., Reimnitz, E., Beals, D. M., Pochkowki, J. M., Winn, W. G., and Rigor, I., 1998, Transport of Cs-137 and Pu-239, 240 with ice-rafted debris in the Arctic Ocean: Arctic, v. 51, no. 1, p. 27-39.
Phillips, E. J. P, Landa, E. R., Kraemer, T., Zielinski, R., 2001, Sulfate-reducing bacteria release barium and radium from naturally occurring radioactive material in oil-field barite: Geomicrobiology Journal, v. 18, p. 167-182.
Voytek, M. A., Ashen, J. B., Fogarty, L. R., Kirshtein, J. D., and Landa, E. R., 2005, Detection of Helicobacter pylori and fecal indicator bacteria in five North American rivers. Journal of Water and Health, v. 3, p. 405-422.
Jones, E. J. P., Nadeau, T-L., Voytek, M. A., and Landa, E. R., 2006, Role of microbial iron reduction in the dissolution of iron hydroxysulfate minerals. Journal of Geophysical Research–Biogeosciences, v. 111, no. G1, citation number G01012, doi:10.1029/2005JG000089.
Camponelli, K. M., Casey, R. E., Snodgrass, J. W., Lev, S. M., and Landa, E. R., 2009, Impacts of weathered tire debris on the development of Rana sylvatica larvae, Chemosphere, v. 74, p. 717-722.
Landa, E. R. and Feller, C. (eds.), 2010, Soil and Culture. Springer, Dordrecht, The Netherlands; 488 p (+color plates).
Borrok, D. M., Gieré, R., Ren, M., Landa, E. R., 2010, Zinc isotopic composition of particulate matter generated during the combustion of coal and coal + tire-derived fuels. Environmental Science & Technology, v. 44, p. 9219-9224.
Landa, E. R. (2014) Potash, Passion, and a President: Early 20th century debates on soil fertility in the United States. In The Soil Underfoot: Infinite possibilities for a finite resource (G. J. Churchman and E. R. Landa, eds.), p. 269-288; CRC Press.
Nimmo, J. R., Hermann, P. M., Kirkham, M. B., Landa, E. R. (2014) Pollen dispersal by catapult: Experiments of Lyman J. Briggs on the flower of Mountain Laurel. Physics in Perspective v. 16, no. 3, 371-389.
Campbell, K. M., Gallegos, T. J., Landa, E. R. (2015) Biogeochemical aspects of uranium mining, milling, and remediation. Applied Geochemistry 57: 206-235.