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Direct Push Technologies

Direct push technologies (DPT) are a category of equipment that push or drive steel rods into the ground. They allow cost-effective, rapid sampling and data collection from unconsolidated soils and sediments. A tremendous variety of equipment is available, particularly in the type of attachments used at the end of rods to collect samples and data. These attachments may collect soil, soil gas, or groundwater samples; they may conduct in situ analysis of contaminants; or they may collect geophysical data that are continuously logged as the DPT rods are advanced. Continuous logs of subsurface conditions are particularly valuable because they help to develop a three-dimensional conceptual site model.

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General Technology Information
Groundwater Sampling and Monitoring with Direct Push Technologies (EPA 540/R-04/005) (3.7MB/78pp/PDF)

This guidance document focuses on direct push technology (DPT) groundwater sampling issues. It addresses two groundwater sampling methods (i.e., “point-in-time” and “grab sampling”). The cost saving potential of DPT groundwater sampling technologies coupled with a rapid method of analysis, provides new defensible opportunities for making site decisions and an efficient project management tool for on-site activities. This guidance summarizes DPT groundwater sampling methods; the relevant data quality objectives; recommended methods for collecting representative groundwater samples; and recommended methods for minimizing the potential for cross-contamination. This guidance is intended for environmental professionals who have basic scientific understanding of groundwater sampling and DPT equipment. The guidance should be used with existing resources and initiatives that support the adoption of a dynamic field activity approach. For specific questions and comments regarding this guidance, please contact Eric Reynolds (reynolds.eric@epa.gov) of the Office of Superfund Remediation and Technology Innovation (OSRTI) at (703) 603-9928, or Elizabeth Holman (holman.elizabeth@epa.gov) of OSRTI at (703) 603-8761.

U.S. EPA Technology Innovation Office Field Analytic Technologies Encyclopedia (FATE) Exit EPA

This web page provides general information on the equipment and capabilities available with DPT. It also provides a number of links to additional resources for more detailed information.
Chapter V: Direct Push Technologies (1.2MB/67pp/PDF)
From: Expedited Site Assessment Tools For Underground Storage Tank Sites: A Guide for Regulator, EPA 510-B-97-001 – Released by the Office of Underground Storage Tanks.
U.S. EPA Office of Research and Development, Kerr Environmental Research Center
DP Methods for Hydrostatic Characterization Exit EPA

This web site, created by the Kansas Geological Survey, provides information on how DP tools can be used for hydrostratigraphic characterization (e.g., hydraulic conductivity).


Specific Equipment Information

Laser-Induced Fluorescence (LIF) Sensing Technologies
Site Characterization and Analysis Penetrometer System (SCAPS)
Rapid Optical Screening Tool (ROST™)
System for Screening of Petroleum Hydrocarbons in Subsurface Soils
In Situ Analysis Using Direct Push Technologies
  • Chapter VI: Field Methods for the Analysis of Petroleum Hydrocarbons (246K/58pp/PDF)
    From: Expedited Site Assessment Tools for Underground Storage Tanks Sites: A Guide for Regulator, EPA 510-B-97-001, released by the Office of Underground Storage Tanks. - see pages 48-50


Soil Sampling Technologies

Art's Manufacturing and Supply – AMSTM Dual Tube Liner Sampler

Clements & Associates, Inc. - JMC Environmentalist's Subsoil Probe

Geoprobe Systems, Inc. - Large Bore Soil Sampler


Comparison Study
Performance Comparison: Direct-Push Wells Versus Drilled Wells, by the Naval Facilities Engineering Command Exit EPA

This report demonstrates that there are no statistical performance differences between direct push and hollow stem auger monitoring wells over four sampling rounds covering 6 months. Additional samples rounds are being collected in order to develop a long-term data base.


Vendor Information
EPA REACH IT (REmediation And CHaracterization Innovative Technologies) Exit EPA

Search, view, download, and print information about innovative remediation and characterization technologies. REACH IT gives users access to comprehensive information about treatment and characterization technologies and their applications.



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