Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Environmental Engineering and Science


Department of Systems Engineering and Management

First Advisor

Mark N. Goltz, PhD


With recent increases, there are approximately 20,000 Marines deployed in the Helmand Province of Afghanistan. The cost of delivering bottled water to the troops is rapidly becoming unsustainable and convoys delivering bottled water are vulnerable to Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs). Currently, raw water from indigenous sources, which has chemical and microbiological contaminants, is treated with reverse osmosis (RO), but only used for hygiene, with bottled water used for drinking. Due to the economic costs and risks to life of providing bottled water, decision-makers need to evaluate technology alternatives to treat raw water to supply safe drinking water. In this study, an innovative decision analysis tool, Choosing by Advantages (CBA), was used to evaluate and select the best alternative water treatment technology to support Marines in Afghanistan. Using criteria developed by a panel of experts, the CBA method was applied to determine that the best alternative technology is a treatment train: ultrafiltration pretreatment, RO treatment, and electrodeionization post treatment. This treatment train would produce high quality water and lower overall RO energy consumption, operation and maintenance costs, and reduce the replacement frequency of RO membranes.

AFIT Designator


DTIC Accession Number