QA - PEP

PEP = Performance Evaluation Program

40 CFR Part 58 Appendix A sections 3.2.7, 3.3.7, and 3.3.4.4 describe requirements for performance evaluation (PE) sampling to be performed on automated and manual monitors used to measure bias for PM2.5 and Pb. The PE is implemented by collocating a second independent monitor within 2-4 meters of the site’s primary monitor and sending the PE sample to an independent laboratory for analysis.

  • If a PQAO has less than or equal to 5 PM2.5 sites, then 5 PM2.5 PEP audits per year are required.

  • If greater than 5 sites, then 8 PEP audits per year are required.

  • Both primary and PEP monitor concentrations must be valid and > 3 ug/m3.

  • If a PQAO has less than or equal to 5 Pb PM10 sites, then 1 audit and 4 collocated samples per year are required.

  • If greater than 5 Pb PM10 sites, then 2 audits, and 6 collocated samples per year are required.

PM2.5 PEP

Data flow from the primary monitor:

PEP assessments consist of a comparison of the S/L/T agency (PQAO’s) primary monitor with a collocated, EPA FRM monitor which is brought on site and operated by EPA or a representative such as Environmental Services Assistance Team (ESAT) contractors. Sometimes authority to run this program is delegated to state agencies, and referred to as self-implementing states.

The primary monitor samples every 6th day (or every 3rd day if a PSD program monitor. The EPA monitor (PEP monitor) samples concurrently with the primary monitor.

The PQAO’s monitoring results (from the primary monitor) consist of a sample volume, and exposed filter. The exposed filter is sent to the PQAO’s lab for analysis. This is the analyzing agency in AQS for the monitor being audited.

The PQAO records the sample volume. The lab analyzes the mass of PM2.5 on the filter, and reports that result back to the PQAO. The PQAO then submits the concentration value (mass/volume) to AQS via an RD transaction, as well as their in-house data systems.

Data flow from the collocated PEP monitor:

The PEP monitor will sample concurrently with the PQAO’s primary monitor, and the exposed PEP filter is sent to the USEPA Region 4 lab for analysis of mass.

A chain of custody form (COC) is used by the PEP monitor operators (ESAT / USEPA / or delegated state personnel) to report metadata about the PEP monitor’s results to both the USEPA Region 4 PEP laboratory and also to a PEP program support contractor. Met data and sample volume are part of the metadata included on the COC.

The PEP program support contractor uses the filter results and COC data and creates a PEP transaction for input into AQS. The data is also loaded into a PEP database maintained by the contractor.

The USEPA Region 4 lab sends the results of the PEP filter analyses (sample mass) to the contractor who enters this data into the PEP database. The filter id which is uniquely assigned to each filter when manufactured is used to identify the metadata and audit values.

The contractor uses the filter id to associate the sample volume with the appropriate filter so that concentration can be calculated. The contractor then creates and loads the PEP transactions to AQS using the PEP transaction.

For PEP transactions, the RP transaction is used. The indicated value is left blank; only the actual value is populated. The agency being audited must have already submitted raw data from the primary monitor for the date of the PEP audit before the PEP data can be loaded to AQS. As part of the validation process, AQS checks to see that there is already a state sample in the data base.

PEP for Pb

Pb PEP

Pb PEP assessments consist of a comparison of the PQAO’s primary Pb monitors (TSP at LC - 14129, or PM10 at LC - 85129 - either hi vol or lo vol methods) with a collocated, Pb-PEP FRM monitor which is brought on site and operated independently by EPA or an EPA contractor on a day the primary sampler is set to run.

Data flow from PQAO primary monitor:

The PQAO’s monitoring results (from the primary monitor) consist of a sample volume, and exposed filter. The exposed filter is sent to the PQAO’s lab for analysis. This is the analyzing agency in AQS.

The PQAO records the sample volume. The lab analyzes the mass of Pb on the filter, and reports that result back to the PQAO. The PQAO then submits the concentration value (mass/volume) to AQS via an RD transaction, as well as their in-house data systems.

Data Flow from PEP Monitor:

If the PQAO has been certified as self implementing, then the Pb PEP data will be analyzed at a laboratory which is independent from the laboratory used for routine (primary) sample analysis. The Pb PEP result will then be loaded by the PQAO as a Pb PEP assessment.

If the PQAO uses the federally implemented Pb-PEP, the exposed PEP filter is sent to the USEPA Region 9 lab for analysis of Pb mass. A chain of custody form (COC) is used by the PEP monitor operators (ESAT / USEPA) to supply metadata about the PEP monitor’s results to both the USEPA Region 9 PEP laboratory (the analyzing agency) as well as the Pb PEP program support contractor for OAQPS. This data includes the filter id and sample volume.

The USEPA Region 9 lab sends the Pb results of the filter analyses to the support contractor, using the filter id to identify the metadata.

The support contractor uses the filter id to associate the sample volume with the appropriate filter so that the final concentration can be calculated. At the time of this writing, the transactions have not yet been created and submitted to AQS.

Collocated Pb PEP

Collocated Pb PEP assessments consist of a comparison of the S/L/T agency (PQAO’s) collocated Pb monitor (TSP at LC, or PM10 at LC - hi vol or lo vol) with the associated primary monitor, with the analysis being performed at an EPA lab. The PQAO runs its collocated sampler on a day when it is not performing precision collocated sampling to meet precision collocation requirements, so that the filter can be sent to EPA for analysis.

Data Flow from the PQAO’s Primary Monitor:

The PQAO’s primary monitor reports a concentration value to AQS for the sampling day in the routine fashion. This value can be compared against the Collocated Pb PEP concentration value reported by the Pb PEP support contractor to determine the comparability of the PQAO’s collocated sampler. Because the collocated filter is analyzed by an independent laboratory, this assessment provides a determination of the quality associated with the PQAO’s laboratory.

Data Flow from PQAO’s Collocated Monitor:

The filter from the S/L/T collocated sampler and a Chain of Custody (COC) form is sent to an independent laboratory (EPA Region 9 for TSP filters, or OAQPS for PM10 filters) for analysis; rather than the PQAO’s routine analyzing agency.

The PQAO goes to the monitoring site to remove the filter, the COC form is completed, and hardcopy is sent to the Region 9 lab. The PQAO completes the remainder of the COC form and provides the data to the Pb PEP support contractor. Validation of the COC form data is performed by EPA Regional Office personnel.

A copy of the COC is sent by the PQAO (emailed) to the Region 9 laboratory.

The Region 9 lab reports the filter result (mass) to the support contractor, who uses the mass and volume data to provide the concentration for reporting via the transaction.

Format

QA - Performance Evaluation Program transaction format

Seq.

Name

Description

Formatting Rules

Required

Key

1

Transaction Type

Quality Assurance transaction identifier.

Must = QA

Always

2

Action Indicator

Indicator for Insert, Update, or Delete action.

Must = I, U, or D

Always

3

Assessment Type

Indicates the specific QA assessment associated with the transaction.

Must = PEP

Always

Y

4

Performing Agency

Agency Code of organization performing assessment.

Must exist in AGENCIES reference table.

Optional; defaults to user agency

5

State Code / Tribal Indicator

The FIPS state code of the monitor, or “TT” to indicate that the next field on the transaction is a Tribal code.

Must exist in STATES Reference Table or be ‘TT’ for Tribal Site

Always

Y

6

County Code / Tribal Code

The FIPS County Code of the site. If the previous field on the transaction contains “TT”, then the Tribal Code of the site.

Must exist in COUNTIES (for state) or TRIBAL_AREAS Reference table

Always

Y

7

Site Number

Four digit number to uniquely identify site in county and/or tribe.

Must exist in SITES table with {State Code, county Code} or Tribal Code

Always

Y

8

Parameter Code

The AQS parameter code assigned to the monitor in AQS.

Must exist in PARAMETERS reference table.

Always

Y

9

POC

Parameter Occurrence Code: One or two digit number identifying a specific monitor for a parameter at the site.

Must exist in MONITOR table for non-Insert actions.

Always

Y

10

Assessment Date

Date that the assessment was performed

YYYYMMDD.

Always

Y

11

Assessment Number

A unique number associated with an assessment performed at a site on a given day. Value should be “1” unless additional same assessments are performed.

Integer.

Always

Y

12

PEP Type

Indicates where the PEP monitor is operated by the Audit Agency or by the Monitoring Agency.

Must = INDEPENDENT or COLLOCATED

Insert

13

Monitor Method Code

The sampling methodology of the monitor being assessed.

Must exist in SAMPLING METHODOLOGIES reference table.

Insert

14

Reported Unit

Units associated with the assessment concentration.

Must exist in UNITS reference table, and unit code must be for Concentration units type.

Unless Delete

15

Assessment Concentration

The value reported by the PEP monitor for the Date-Time.

Decimal.

Insert