Passive Diffusion Bags (PDB)

Analytical testing dots
Deployment of Passive Diffusion Bag Samplers (PDBS)


  • Samples volatile organics
  • Available in both pre-filled and unfilled versions
  • Simple to deploy
  • Eliminates the collection and disposal of purged water
  • Significantly reduces the cost of sampling
  • Ideal for groundwater sampling


<  View all passive diffusion products

NEW! View instruction video

Analytical testing dots


Passive Sampling with PDB

Click for PDB closer up

Pre-filled with laboratory certified analyte free water
No filling necessary. Our PDBs are pre-filled with polished RO/DI water. Each lot number is tested by low-level EPA Method 8260B, down to 1.0 ppb, to insure the product is contaminant free. A quality assurance certificate is available with each delivery.

Rugged sampler
Our PDBs are made of medical grade, high strength, low density polyethylene. Patented tubes have special heat sealed seams that resist abrasion and unique tabs that allow both quick attachment to hanging assemblies and ease in pouring upon retrieval.

Data is as valid as volume purge
Over 100,000 of our PDBs have been installed at hundreds of sites in the last 10 years for the collection of volatile organics. Data is considered by most regulators as valid as that obtained from conventional purge sampling.

Simplicity in design and use
Simplicity in design extends to its utility and cost effectiveness in the field. No additional parts are required. Storage space is minimal, handling is easy, deployments and retrievals are fast and pouring into vials is sure and simple.

Stainless steel hanging option
Ready to use, non-corrosive stainless steel hanging assemblies are available. Hardware will be placed at the exact measurements of the well screen so all you need to do is clip the PDBs on and deploy. No stretching, corroding or breaking.

Analytical testing dots

How PDB Samplers Work

Deployment of Passive Diffusion Bag Samplers (PDBS)

PDB samplers are made of low density polyethylene (LDPE), which acts as a semi-permeable membrane. VOCs, excluding certain ketones, ethers and alcohols, diffuse readily through the membrane. An equilibrium is established between the VOCs in the bag and those in the groundwater. The PDB Sampler is filled with analyte-free water and is in the shape of a long cylindrical tube. Upon retrieval, usually 14 days after deployment, bags are opened to fill vials and returned to the laboratory for analysis.

Analytical testing dots

PDB Manufacturing

ALS Environmental has been granted a license to manufacture, use and provide the bags by the US Geological Survey (USGS) and The General Electric Company (GE), both co-patent holders on the product (US #5,804,743). The downhole passive water sampler and method of sampling was invented by Don Vroblesky (USGS) and Thomas Hyde (GE).

ALS Environmental is a leader in passive diffusion sampler (PDS) technology and has been since March 2000 when it began manufacturing and distributing samplers for Volatile Organic Compounds (VOCs). Wide acceptance of these samplers has spurred ALS Environmental to partner with USGS to develop passive diffusion samplers for common LTM inorganic parameters. Both laboratory and field demonstration studies are currently underway to determine feasibility of nylon-screen (NS) and rigid porous polyethylene (RPP).

Passive Diffusion Sampler BagAnalytical testing dotsPDB Options Available

The standard size PDB Sampler is 24" long and 1 ¼" in diameter. It is manufactured from 4 Mil-thick, 2" wide, "lay flat", low-density polyethylene. All seams and connections are made by heat-seals only. A standard 24" long pre-filled PDB Sampler holds approximately 220 mL of ASTM Type II certified, laboratory-grade, analyte-free, deionized water. After retrieval, simply cut the top and pour water into 40 mL vials.

Different sizes are available with advance notice. If there is a chance of abrasion or tearing due to the well’s physical condition, we recommend the use of a protective polyethylene mesh cover.

The unfilled PDB sampler must be filled with water prior to deployment; it holds approximately 350 mL. It is fitted at one end with a threaded screw cap for filling and a snap-on spout for pouring water into vials. When ready to sample, just open the snap top and pour.

Analytical testing dots

Pre-Filled Passive Diffusion Bag Samplers

(Contains certified ASTM Type II deionized water)

pre-filled Passive Diffusion Bags price, each
1-50 (standard 24" length, 220ml) $28.50
51 OR MORE (standard 24" length, 220ml) $25.00
36" length - 1-1/4" diameter, 330ml $28.50
24" length - 3/4" diameter, 110ml $28.50
36" length - 3/4" diameter, 165ml $28.50
48" length - 3/4" diameter, 220ml $28.50
Other non-standard size bags are available Call for quote

Analytical testing dots

Unfilled Passive Diffusion Bag Samplers

Unfilled Passive Diffusion Bags price, each
1-50 (standard 24" length, 350ml) $20.00
51 OR MORE (standard 24" length, 350ml) $19.00
Analytical testing dots

Accessories for Passive Diffusion Bag Samplers

Storage Pouches, each
zip-lock type (storage < 14 days before deployment) FREE
foil barrier type (storage > 14 days before deployment) $15.00
Protective Mesh Cover, EACH
(optional and reusable)
One unit $2.00

Analytical testing dots

Click here to order!

ALS Environmental is a licensed manufacturer of passive diffusion samplers. We actively participate in the Interstate Technology Regulatory Council (ITRC) and have been instrumental in technological and regulatory advancements in this field.

ALS Environmental also provides air quality sampling equipment and media for lease or purchase. More information can be found in our air quality testing and consulting service section.


<  View all passive diffusion products