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The Passive Samplers training course addresses the use of polyethylene diffusion bags for passive groundwater sampling, particularly for long-term monitoring.

Passive Samplers - Protocol for Use of Five Passive Samplers

All groundwater samplers or sampling methodologies attempt to collect a well-water sample which is representative of the groundwater adjacent to the well. The ITRC Passive Sampler Team has defined a passive groundwater sampler as one that is able to acquire a sample from a discrete position in a well without active media transport induced by pumping or purge techniques. Passive sampling is synonymous with no-purge sampling and can be used as a substitute or replacement for any current groundwater sampling technology. Passive samplers have been used in every state in the U.S. and in many other countries. Passive samplers are relatively easy to use; eliminate purge-water production (therefore, there is little or no disposal cost); reduce field sampling variability resulting in highly reproducible data; decrease field labor and project management costs for long-term monitoring; allow rapid field sample collection; sample discrete intervals in a well; are practical for use where access is difficult or discretion is desirable; can be deployed in series to provide a vertical contaminant profile; and have virtually no depth limit.

This training supports the understanding and use of the ITRC Protocol for Use of Five Passive Samplers to Sample for a Variety of Contaminants in Groundwater (DSP-5, 2007). The five technologies included in this document include diffusion samplers (Regenerated Cellulose Dialysis Membrane Sampler and Rigid Porous Polyethylene Sampler), equilibrated grab samplers (Snap™ and HydraSleeve™ Sampler), and an accumulation sampler (GORE™ Module). The training starts with information common to all five samples then focuses on each sampler as instructors describe the sampler and explain how it works, discuss deployment and retrieval of the sampler, highlight advantages and limitations, and present results of data comparison studies.

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