Diatomite has a number of unique physical properties and has found diversified industrial utilization. The filtration characteristics are particularly significant in the purification of liquids. The purpose of this study was to test natural diatomaccous earth (diatomite) as an alternative material that could be used for removal of radioactivity from liquid waste. A pilot-scale column-type device was designed. Natural diatomite samples were ground, sieved and prepared to use as sorption media. In this study, real waste liquid was used as radioactive liquid having special conditions. The liquid waste contained three radionuclides (Cs-137, Cs-134 and Co-60). Following the treatment by diatomite, the radioactivity of liquid waste was reduced from the initial 2.60 Bq/ml to less than 0.40 Bq/ml. The results of this study show that most of the radioactivity was removed from the solution by processing with diatomite. (c) 2006 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.