EPA Science Inventory

Fluctuation of Indoor Radon and VOC Concentrations Due to Seasonal Variations

Citation:

Schumacher, B., R. Truesdale, AND C. Lutes. Fluctuation of Indoor Radon and VOC Concentrations Due to Seasonal Variations. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, Washington, DC, EPA/600/R/12/673, 2012.

Description:

This research was conducted to better characterize the spatial and temporal variability of vapor intrusion by collecting a full year’s dataset of weekly measurements of subslab soil gas, external soil gas, and indoor air, on a single house that is impacted by vapor intrusion of radon and VOCs. By examining both short-term and long-term (average annual) concentrations, the research will provide valuable information on how to best take and evaluate measurements to estimate long-term, chronic risk for VOCs. The relationship between radon and VOC vapor intrusion in a house affected by both was studied. The radon literature could provide valuable lessons for VOC vapor intrusion if there is a relationship, and radon, being much cheaper to measure than VOCs, could be an important tool in improving the investigation and mitigation of VOC vapor intrusion. The long-term performance of modified sorbent-based measurement techniques for time-integrated measurements of indoor air VOCs was examined. The project investigated distributional changes in VOC and radon concentrations in the indoor air, subslab, and subsurface soil gas from an underground source (groundwater source and/or vadose zone source) adjacent to a residence or small commercial building. The time frame of this study is 2 years in order to evaluate the effects due to seasonal variations on radon and VOC vapor intrusion.

Purpose/Objective:

This EPA project report will be used by OSWER to improve vapor intrusion guidance documents currently being prepared and reviewed as well as for guidance document updates in the future. The information provided in the report fills in knowledge gaps identified by the Program Offices, in particular for this report, on seasonal variations of radon and VOC concentrations which are important considerations in VI monitoring and modeling. The extensive database of measurements throughout a year and a half or more cycle will provide OSWER, as well as other VI research professionals, with data and information to put into their modeling efforts to better understand the movement and driving forces of vapors into a residence and, ultimately, the exposure to the residence’s occupants.

URLs/Downloads:

SCHUMACHER ORD-002350 FINAL PUBLISHED REPORT..PDF   (PDF,NA pp, 11877 KB,  about PDF)

Record Details:

Record Type: DOCUMENT (PUBLISHED REPORT/REPORT)
Start Date: 11/07/2012
Completion Date: 11/07/2012
Record Last Revised: 12/31/2012
Record Created: 10/29/2012
Record Released: 10/29/2012
OMB Category: Other
Record ID: 247212

Organization:

U.S. ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY

OFFICE OF RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

NATIONAL EXPOSURE RESEARCH LAB

ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCES DIVISION

ENVIRONMENTAL CHEMISTRY BRANCH