USGS - science for a changing world

Environmental Health - Toxic Substances



This page is no longer being maintained, and will eventually be phased out. The page will be archived and publicly available once it's phased out.

Oxygen-Release Compound


Oxygen-Release Compound - "Oxygen Release Compound (ORC) is a proprietary form of magnesium peroxide, sold by Regenesis Bioremediation Products (Regenesis). It releases oxygen slowly, to stimulate microorganisms. Research and field tests have shown that, applied correctly, ORC is successful in increasing the bioremediation of hydrocarbon contamination." - Daniels and Easterly, 2009

Oxygen-Release Compound - "ORC is a patented formulation of time-release magnesium peroxide that releases oxygen slowly when hydrated. ORC treatment represents a 'low intensity' approach to in-situ aerobic bioremediation ..." - Koenigsberg and Gillespie, 2001

Oxygen-Release Compound - "ORC [Oxygen Release Compound] was developed to clean up low levels of dissolved petroleum hydrocarbons in the subsurface. The compound is a proprietary formulation of a metal peroxide that releases oxygen slowly when placed in the ground water environment. The oxygen thus released enhances aerobic bioremediation. The product is applied to the contaminated site in retrievable filter socks." - National Research Council, 1997

Oxygen-Release Compound - "Oxygen Release Compound (ORC) is a proprietary formulation of phosphate-intercalated magnesium peroxide that, when hydrated, produces a controlled release of oxygen for periods of up to 12 months on a single application. [It's purpose is] to supply controlled-release molecular oxygen to the subsurface environment where it will accelerate the rate of naturally occurring aerobic contaminant biodegradation in groundwater and saturated soils for periods of up to 12 months on a single application." - Regenesis, 2009

Text in brackets ("[text]") are additions by the editor.

Note: Trade names and vendors are used for information purposes only and do not denote endorsement by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Related Definitions


Aerobic Biodegradation

Natural Attentuation

Fenton's Reagent

Related Science Feature Articles

More Information on Oxygen-Release Compound


Daniels, M.E., and Easterly, T.W., 2009, Oxygen Release Compounds: Indiana Department of Environmental Management Technical Guidance Document.

Koenigsberg, S.S., Gillespie, R., and Mahaffey, W.R., 2001, The bioremediation of MTBE with Oxygen Release Compound (ORC), in 8th International Petroleum & Biofuels Environmental Conference, Houston, TX, November 6-9, 2001: Integrated Petroleum Environmental Consortium (IPEC), p. 14.

National Research Council, 1997, Innovations in ground water and soil cleanup--From concept to commercialization: Washington, D.C., National Academies Press, 310 p.

Regenesis Bioremediation Products Inc., 2009, Oxygen Release Compound (ORCĀ®): Regenesis, access date June 27, 2011.


Disclaimer: The definitions on this page are provided for information purposes only, and do not indicate endorment by the U.S. Geological Survey.

USGS Home Water Climate Change Science Systems Ecosystems Energy and Minerals Environmental Health Hazards

Accessibility FOIA Privacy Policies and Notices logo U.S. Department of the Interior | U.S. Geological Survey
Page Contact Information:
Page Last Modified: Tuesday, 04-Aug-2015 14:26:50 EDT