This laboratory is characterizing the mechanisms underlying the potential applications of microwave treatment to the remediation of hazardous waste streams under an Environmental Protection Agency Basic Research grant. Applications that have been investigated encompass the following processes(1-14): volatilization of organics from substrates; ‘chemical fixation’ of non-volatile organics in substrates; ‘chemical fixation’ of heavy metals in substrates; kinetics of decomposition of organics in the gas phase using fixed and ‘lossy’ beds. To-date the work has been carried out on a bench-scale level. Pilot plant studies are now beginning. This paper will focus on studies carried out on non-volatile organics and heavy metals, specifically, chromium.