Soil sampling and analysis for volatile organic compounds

Environmental Monitoring and Assessment
T E LewisR L Siegrist


Concerns over data quality have raised many questions related to sampling soils for volatile organic compounds (VOCs). This paper was prepared in response to some of these questions and concerns expressed by Remedial Project Managers (RPMs) and On-Scene Coordinators (OSCs). The following questions are frequently asked: 1. Is there a specific device suggested for sampling soils for VOCs? 2. Are there significant losses of VOCs when transferring a soil sample from a sampling device (e.g., split spoon) into the sample container? 3. What is the best method for getting the sample from the split spoon (or other device) into the sample container? 4. Are there smaller devices such as subcore samplers available for collecting aliquots from the larger core and efficiently transferring the sample into the sample container? 5. Are certain containers better than others for shipping and storing soil samples for VOC analysis? 6. Are there any reliable preservation procedures for reducing VOC losses from soil samples and for extending holding times? Guidance is provided for selecting the most effective sampling device for collecting samples from soil matrices. The techniques for sample collection, sample handling, containerizing, shipment, and...Continue Reading


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