Air Sampling

_This page collects resources, questions, and requests related to air sampling. Please edit the page to add information or resources._ ## Background Air sampling is a way to capture small amounts of air for laboratory testing. Most air sampling methods involve pulling [whole air samples]( into a bag or container through a vacuum system. The bag or container can then be sealed and shipped to a [lab for testing]( Air grab samples can be tested for over 100 different chemicals ([Louisiana Bucket Brigade]( ### Particle sensing Air sampling for particulate matter or dust pollution is another type of air sampling. See [information on particle sensing on this page](/particle-sensing). ### Types of air samples Air samples typically fall into one of five categories: [indoor air](, ambient air, stationary sources (for instance, a smokestack or factory), soil vapor, and mobile sources (traffic). Each type is regulated differently with different sampling methods depending on what you are looking for. **** ## Questions [questions:air-sampling] **** ## Activities [activities:air-sampling] **** ## Bucket Sampling The bucket monitor is a low-cost, community-friendly air sampler that helps people measure toxic chemicals such as benzene and hydrogen sulfide in their air. It is an EPA-approved grab sampling method that is significantly less expensive than many other air grab systems such as the [summa canister](/wiki/air-sampling#The+Summa+Canister) ([Louisiana Bucket Brigade]( **What it tests:** When paired with lab analysis, the bucket monitor can measure up to 101 air pollutants including dichloromethane, hydrogen sulfide, perchloroethylene, vinyl chloride, toluene, and benzene. The **[bucket monitor wiki page](** contains full instructions on how to build and use a bucket monitor, instructional videos and stories from community partners who have used the bucket to advocate for healthier air, plus a community Q&A. **Cost**: The bucket itself costs around $100 each but they are re-useable. The [lab testing]( costs between $200-$500 each depending on what you want to get tested. The system also needs to be calibrated twice a year which can cost up to $400. **Video on how to use the bucket from Hilton Kelley of [Community In Power and Development Association](** **Story of West Virginia Chemical Valley Bucket Brigade:** **More resources and groups who have experience with the Bucket:** - ["Fenceline" film and Bucket Brigade resources]( - [Louisiana Bucket Brigade]( - [Blue Ridge Environmental Defense League]( ### Other types of canisters for sampling #### The Summa Canister The Summa Canister is a commercially available sampling system. It can take grab samples intermittently, or over a period of time. The Summa Canisters are described in [EPA Method TO-15](, and are commonly used for the collection of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in ambient and indoor air. **Community use case:** The [Citizens for a Healthy Community]( in Paonia, Colorado have used the summa canister for air grab sampling. Here is a publication they put together on [“How Oil & Gas Impacted Communities Can Test Air Quality On A Small Budget: A step-by-step guidebook based on the North Fork Valley Air Sampling Program” 2016]( #### Helium Diffusion Sampler Helium diffusion samplers are wearable devices that take samples to measure (VOCs) in ambient and indoor air. **Community use case:** In 2016, community members in Pavillon, Wyoming participated in a health and air sampling study. They had noticed an increase in health issues locally and were concerned about the pollution coming from the many nearby gas wells. In their exploration of VOCs, they used a FLIR gas camera, Minirea 3000 air monitoring device, an ambient air model, Aldehyde Badges, Summa Canisters and two wearable monitors: HDS (Helium Diffusion Sampler), and Sorbent Tubes. More information on their study, the results and about their community can be found in the "[When the Wind Blows](" ( permalink) publication by Elizabeth Crowe, Sharyle Patton, Deborah Thomas, and Beverley Thorpe. More information on this study and the groups involved can be found on the Coming Clean webpage here at #### More resources on canister sampling - [HDS sampler (and explanation of how they work)]( - [“A Guide to Whole Air Canister Sampling Equipment Needed and Practical Techniques for Collecting Air Samples”]( ...

Author Comment Last activity Moderation
bhamster "A researcher at the EPA reported a study back in 2007, testing how samples of certain volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in Tedlar bags are affected..." | Read more » almost 2 years ago
denissebn_06 " @denissebn_06 has marked @sarasage as a co-author. " | Read more » almost 3 years ago
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telecommunicationsinfrastructu "Great Information! Thanks you " | Read more » about 3 years ago
denissebn_06 " @denissebn_06 has marked @sarasage as a co-author. " | Read more » about 3 years ago
sarasage "We are very close to being able to use our bucket kits in the field and want to thank everyone who made a reliable kit based on the CBE buckets. Th..." | Read more » about 3 years ago
financeworld210 "Thanks for your oppinion. I can also recommend - trading signals. " | Read more » over 3 years ago
amocorro "@stevenlee the Bucket kit is now available in Public Lab's store. Learn more about it here: " | Read more » over 3 years ago
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0721hhmm "hi thank you for content thanks please visit this post " | Read more » over 3 years ago
kgradow1 "Hi @Stevenlee, we don't expect to have this up in the store until mid-December at the earliest, maybe January, but there are a bunch of resources o..." | Read more » over 3 years ago
jjcreedon "remember the buckets only test for VOC's.. what is your concern? What is the source of the pollution, etc? " | Read more » over 3 years ago
amocorro "@Stevenlee thanks for your question regarding the Bucket tool. Public Lab is actually making this tool available soon in our store in the form of a..." | Read more » over 3 years ago
amocorro "@amocorro awards a barnstar to A_SCH for their awesome contribution! " | Read more » over 3 years ago
A_SCH " @A_SCH has marked @kgradow1 as a co-author. " | Read more » over 3 years ago
amocorro "@kgradow1 @mimiss thanks for this discussion. I had initially asked, "How much do the tedlar bags cost?" @mimiss provided the following specifics:..." | Read more » over 3 years ago
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modesto-pest-control "We are a pest control company in Modesto and serve San Joaquin, Stanislaus, and Merced counties. We exterminate all pests including termites, bed b..." | Read more » almost 4 years ago
kgradow1 "Hi @mimiss, we talked about this on our call this week. I think it would make sense to send 1-2 with the kit to help people get set up but also st..." | Read more » almost 4 years ago
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liz "What size tedlar bag is needed for the bucket, and have we ever put in a bulk order for them? " | Read more » over 6 years ago
stevie "I'm not sure. Think these would maybe need to be separate questions? " | Read more » over 6 years ago
warren "What are the requirements for the bucket, like material and size? I think is a good place to start, or US Plastics... Isn't it supposed t..." | Read more » over 6 years ago
stevie "I know. I guess in compairson to some of the other canister systems which look around the 2k range, it is pretty good. Things start getting expensi..." | Read more » almost 7 years ago