Published April 1, 2020 | Version 1.0
Dataset Open

IronRefs database of bibliographic data on remediation of contaminated environmental materials using zerovalent metals such as iron (ZVI)

  • 1. Oregon Health & Science University


Database of bibliographic data for publications (journal articles, reports, patents, presentation abstracts, etc.) on the use of zerovalent metals (ZVMs)—especially zerovalent iron (ZVI)—for remediation or treatment of contaminated environmental materials (mainly groundwater, but also wastewater, soil, and sediment).

The data were compiled and curated between 1996 and 2011 by members of the research group of Professor Paul G. Tratnyek at the Oregon Graduate Institute in Beaverton, Oregon, USA. At the beginning, the field was very small and most new work appeared first in gray-literature, so manual curation of the database made it a uniquely-valuable resource for the community.

The original list of references was replaced with a searchable online database in 1998, which was named the “IronRefs” database and made available to all at The database was updated periodically until 2011, by which time the field had grown so large that it was no longer practical to keep up with all of the new publications.

The early development and impact of the IronRefs database was documented when it reached 500 records (Tratnyek, 2002) and when it reached 1000 records (Schneider et al., 2008). The former was published as an article in Groundwater Monitoring and Remediation (DOI: 10.1111/j.1745-6592.2002.tb00757.x) and the latter was given as a poster at the 6th International Conference on Chlorinated and Recalcitrant Compounds, Monterey, CA (PDF included here).

In 2019, the server containing IronRefs was retired, so this unique resource became unavailable. In place of IronRefs, we provide here all of the data (2000+ records) in two tagged-field formats that are compatible with most bibliographic data management software: an EndNote compressed library (.enlx) and an RIS file (.ris). We also exported the data to a tab-delimited text file and provide that in .csv and .txt formats.

Note that no new records were added to the IronRefs database after about mid-2011, so the value of the dataset provided here is largely historical. There are many newer publications that are relevant, and the literature on this topic continues to grow rapidly as of 2020.


During the years that IronRefs was actively developed and maintained, many students and interns associated with the Tratnyek research group made contributions. However, special recognition goes to David Severson, Jason Lou, Rachel Schneider, and Graham O'Brien Johnson. Funding that made IronRefs possible came from Environmental Technologies Inc. (ETI), the University Consortium Solvents in Groundwater Research Program (Univ. of Waterloo), and Prof. Tratnyek's grants for research on ZVI from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (STAR), Department of Energy (NABIR and SBR), and Department of Defense (SERDP-ESTCP).


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