Heavy metal containing sludges from wastewater treatment plants of electroplating industries are designated as hazardous waste since their improper disposal pose high risks to environment. In this research, heavy metal containing sludges of electroplating industries in an organized industrial zone of Istanbul/Turkey were used as real-sample model for development of an immobilization process with sodium tetraborate and sodium silicate as additives.The washed sludges have been precalcined in a rotary furnace at 900 degrees C and fritted at three different temperatures of 8503 degrees C, 900 degrees C and 950 degrees CC The amounts of additives were adjusted to provide different acidic and basic oxide ratios in the precalcined sludge-additive mixtures. Leaching tests were conducted according to the toxicity characteristic leaching procedure Method 1311 of US-EPA. X-ray diffraction (XRD), X-ray fluorescence (XRF), scanning electron microscope-energy dispersive spectrometer (SEM-EDS) and flame atomic absorption spectroscopy (FAAS) have been used to determine the physical and chemical changes in the products. Calculated oxide molar ratios in the precalcined sludge-additive mixtures and their leaching results have been used to optimize the stabilization process and to determine the intervals of the required oxide ratios which provide end-products resistant to leaching procedure of US-EPA. The developed immobilization-process provides lower energy consumption than sintering-vitrification processes of glass-ceramics. (C) 2013 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.