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Cross-Working Group Activity: Passive sampling

Passive sampling for emerging contaminants

Starting date: 2009


 Present co-ordinator:  Norwegian Institute for Water Research (Norway)



               Joint co-ordinator: INRAE (France)




    Past coordinator: RECETOX and WRI (Czech Republic and Slovakia)








Passive samplers represent an innovative monitoring tool for the time-integrated measurement of bioavailable contaminants in water and sediment. Passive sampling technology is proving to be a reliable, robust and cost-effective tool that could be used in water quality monitoring programmes across Europe. These devices are now being considered as a part of an emerging strategy for monitoring a range of priority and emerging pollutants in water and sediments.Passive sampling applications also include air monitoring, human and personal exposure monitoring.

However, a number of challenges still need to be solved. There is an urgent need to harmonise work in this area, and to bring together the different research groups to develop sound validation procedures for all aspects of the use of passive sampling devices, including laboratory calibration, handling, field deployment, chemical or toxicological analysis and data interpretation. Common repositories for passive sampling data are currently unavailable and possibilities to develop specimen banks need to be considered. 

Finally, there is an increasing interest in the use of passive sampling techniques for non-target and retrospective screening purposes. With regard to these relatively novel applications, we are working to develop links with other relevant NORMAN working groups and activities.  

Present and future passive sampler applications and cross-working group activities within the NORMAN association




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