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    Marines wash away thirst at exercise Pacific Horizon

    Marines wash away thirst at exercise Pacific Horizon

    Photo By Lance Cpl. Caitlin Bevel | Lance Cpl. Joel Arndt, a water support technician with Marine Wing Support Squadron...... read more read more

    CAMP PENDLETON, CA, UNITED STATES

    10.23.2014

    Story by Lance Cpl. Caitlin Bevel 

    1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade

    CAMP PENDLETON, Calif. - Marines with Marine Wing Support Squadron 373 established a Tactical Water Purification System at Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, Calif., during exercise Pacific Horizon 2015, Oct. 22.

    This scenario-driven exercise is designed to train Expeditionary Strike Group 3 and the 1st Marine Expeditionary Brigade in Maritime Prepositioning Force operations in the context of a humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations.

    “We’re providing water for humanitarian assistance and disaster relief operations during exercise Pacific Horizon,” said Chief Warrant Officer 2 Aaron Alcorn, the utilities officer for Marine Wing Support Squadron 373. “It can purify just about any type of water, fresh water, brackish water, even sea water like we’re doing here. It takes out all of the impurities and solutes to make potable water.”

    A single person uses approximately 20 gallons of water a day for hydration, hygiene and sanitation. The TWPS meets that need by producing up to 1,500 gallons of clean water every hour.

    “The higher the salinity or total dissolved solids the slower it goes, but without water it would be really hard to do anything,” said Alcorn. “If it goes down it has second, third and fourth order effects that could seriously impact the mission.”

    The exercise is an opportunity for the Marines to practice their skills on a large scale and see the type of impact they can have.
    “We’re showing the Marines how to produce quality water and distribute the water to personnel,” said Gunnery Sgt. Rodney Worsley, the utilities chief for MWSS-373. “Marines will feel confident in the gear they are running and also the product they are producing, and personnel will feel confident in the quality of the water they are receiving from us.”

    Once the system is running, it only takes two Marines to monitor the system and keep it running. The TWPS can be set up by just 4 Marines in as little as 4 hours, but it is far from simple.

    “When we are taking from the ocean there a lot of things we have to take into consideration,” said Worsley. “We have to think about high tide, low tide, and where to position the gear because once it’s in place and the waves come up we can’t move it.”

    The few generators and trucks needed to transport and maintain the TWPS mean that extra personnel are needed.

    “We have electricians and electrical engineers, who fix and repair all the engineering equipment,” said Worsley. “We can do all of our operations and maintenance within this one platoon.”

    Worsley explained that the TWPS is a high volume, versatile system that can be, and has been, used by a variety of forces.

    “Right now the Marine Corps uses this system a lot,” said Worsley. “The Marine Expeditionary Units, the air wing, everyone is requesting this system.”

    With the high demand for performance, whether supporting combat units or providing humanitarian assistance, the Marines and the equipment have to be in top shape at all times.

    “We train often to keep our skills and make sure the system is always at a high state of readiness,” said Worsley.

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    NEWS INFO

    Date Taken: 10.23.2014
    Date Posted: 10.24.2014 00:39
    Story ID: 145936
    Location: CAMP PENDLETON, CA, US 

    Web Views: 85
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    Marines wash away thirst at exercise Pacific Horizon