Passive Air Sampling

Analytical testing dots
Summa Canister

ALS Environmental now offers analysis of Radiello® passive diffusive air samplers. Used in Europe for over 10 years, passive diffusive samplers are now gaining attention in the United States for many air sampling applications.

Passive diffusive air sampling can yield qualitative and/or quantitative information for many individual compounds (e.g. hydrogen sulfide) and chemical classes (e.g. volatile organic compounds). Sampling with passive diffusive devices such as Radiello® yields several benefits — no sampling pump is required, it is discreet, and it can achieve low reporting limits. With careful advance planning and discussion with laboratory staff, passive samplers can be used to meet data quality objectives.

Analytical testing dots

Applications for Passive Diffusive Air Samplers

  • Ambient air monitoring
  • Indoor air monitoring
  • Workplace monitoring
  • LEED/Green Building (EQ Credit 3.2) sampling
  • Fenceline/Perimeter air monitoring at remediation sites
  • Odor investigations
  • Landfill perimeter monitoring
  • Airport ambient air monitoring
  • Long-term (>24 hours) air monitoring
  • Air monitoring in remote locations (no electrical power)


Analytical testing dots

Radiello® FAQs

1. Are Radiello® “approved” by OSHA/NIOSH for IH use?
Sigma Aldrich is pursuing addendums for OSHA/NIOSH methods for 2010. While the addendum will not officially “approve” the use of the devices, it will provide additional information that can be used to support the choice of using Radiello for a particular project.

2. Are Radiello® “approved” by EPA for use?
At this time, there is no “approved” status for Radiello®, but they are involved in three large EPA studies. It is uncertain if the EPA will officially release a new Air Method with passive samplers.

Radiello passive air sampling3. Are Radiello® a good “replacement” for or “improvement” on Summa canisters?
For some sampling applications, Radiello® may be a viable option. However, the list of VOCs for the thermal desorption tube and/or the chemical desorption tube is not as long as our standard 75 compound TO-15 list. This is partially due to the fact that, as with any type of sorbent sampling (e.g. active sampling TO-17), one sorbent material is not optimal for a very long list of compounds of differing chemical properties/boiling points. In addition, with Radiello®, each VOC will have its own sampling rate — and thus its own reporting limit.
It is best to consult with the lab to see if the VOCs of interest at your site have established sampling rates.

4. When would I use Radiello® instead of Summa canisters?
Here are some examples:

  • If you are interested in other parameters not sampled in Summa canisters: e.g. aldehydes, SO2, NO2, Ozone, H2S
  • If you are looking for long-term indoor/ambient air sampling (longer than 24 hours)
  • If you are looking for a discreet indoor/ambient air sampling option (i.e. you are worried that residents/neighbors will see the Summa canisters and wonder what is going on)

5. Can Radiello® give me low reporting limits for risk based sampling?
The longer you expose Radiello® for sampling, the lower the reporting limits will be. Thus, for some compounds/applications, Radiello® may yield very low reporting limits suitable for risk based sampling.

6. Can Radiello® be used for soil vapor?
The manufacturer cautions against using these samplers for applications such as soil vapor sampling, where the air flow is limited. There needs to be sufficient air flow by the sorbent media to apply the established sampling rates. ALS Environmental is currently participating in a study that is evaluating Radiello®, among other passive samplers, for high concentration/soil vapor samples. We will share results as soon as they are available.

7. Do you have examples of projects where Radiello® has been used?
Our lab is currently performing side-by-side sampling with various Radiello® and established sampling methods. We will share results as soon as they are available. There are also numerous journal articles & conference proceedings mentioning the use of Radiello® samplers — please contact the laboratory for a list of these publications.


Contact us to learn whether passive diffusive sampling can be used for your next project.Analytical testing dots

Learn about Hydrofluoric Acid Testing...

Learn about Testing Mercury in Air...

Learn about our Air Testing Laboratory...

Read Frequently Asked Questions...

View Air Sampling Instructions...

Analytical testing dots