Seven solid sorbents including Amberlite® XAD-2 and XAD-4, Tenax-TA®, Anasorb-747, Chromosorb 102, 108, and 750 were evaluated for the collection of the gas phase fraction of pesticides under field conditions at an agricultural site, Bratt’s Lake, SK, located in the Canadian prairies. The polyurethane foam (PUF)/sorbent cartridge consists of two PUF layers which sandwich the solid sorbent and each layer was analyzed separately to determine which portion of the PUF/solid sorbent retained the pesticides and the extent of breakthrough. The pesticides that had high detection frequency throughout the study and ambient air concentrations well above MDL were triallate, trifluralin, ethalfluralin, and chlorpyrifos. All sorbents had improved collection efficiency as compared to a standard 7.6 cm PUF and the improvement varied with each pesticide. The most effective sorbents for trapping gas phase fraction of pesticides were XAD-2, XAD-4, Tenax-TA, and Chromosorb 108. The only sorbent not recommended for use is Chromosorb 750. For selected sampling periods when ambient concentrations were above detection limits a number of other organochlorine and organophosphorus pesticides also showed more efficient collection with PUF/solid sorbent cartridges as compared to PUF cartridge. Shorter sample collection periods of 4-days improved detection frequency of pesticides.
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