Ground-water samples were collected in April 1999 at Naval Air Station Whidbey Island, Washington, with passive diffusion samplers and a submersible pump to compare concentrations of volatile organic compounds (VOCs) in water samples collected using the two sampling methods. Single diffusion samplers were installed in wells with 10-foot screened intervals, and multiple diffusion samplers were installed in wells with 20- to 40-foot screened intervals. The diffusion samplers were recovered after 20 days and the wells were then sampled using a submersible pump. VOC concentrations in the 10-foot screened wells in water samples collected with diffusion samplers closely matched concentrations in samples collected with the submersible pump. Analysis of VOC concentrations in samples collected from the 20- to 40-foot screened wells with multiple diffusion samplers indicated vertical concentration variation within the screened interval, whereas the analysis of VOC concentrations in samples collected with the submersible pump indicated mixing during pumping. The results obtained using the two sampling methods indicate that the samples collected with the diffusion samplers were comparable with and can be considerably less expensive than samples collected using a submersible pump.
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Comparison of passive diffusion bag samplers and submersible pump sampling methods for monitoring volatile organic compounds in ground water at Area 6, Naval Air Station, Whidbey Island, Washington