Feasibility and Assessment of Applying Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) to U.S. Navy Ships


Burnette, Jonathan, Feasibility and Assessment of Applying Ultraviolet Germicidal Irradiation (UVGI) to U.S. Navy Ships, Masters Thesis, Systems Engineering, Naval Postgraduate School (NPS), Monterey California USA, December 2021. Advisors Don Brutzman and Gregory Miller.

Abstract. This thesis explores the feasibility of using ultraviolet germicidal irradiation (UVGI) to help clean the air aboard US Navy ships. Recent airborne related infections on Naval vessels, including the COVID-19 outbreak aboard a United States aircraft carrier, highlight the need to improve disinfection techniques used aboard naval vessels. Application of 200-280nm wavelength UVC light to the ship's heating, ventilation, air conditioning (HVAC) system in using specific exposure profiles makes inactivation and termination of airborne pathogens possible. Research has shown that UVGI is also successful at destroying biological warfare agents such as anthrax. Proper implementation of UVGI within a ship's ventilation system and in-room spaces can achieve high disinfection rates of airborne pathogens, reduce airborne-related illnesses, and increase operational availability. Commercial maritime employment of UVGI is also instructive. Recommendations included completing a multi-disciplinary design effort to install commercial-based prototypes on naval ships.

Publication pending. Now available: draft thesis, video presentation (duration 20:30) and slideset (.pdf or pptx).


Official disclaimer: "Material contained herein is made available for the purpose of peer review and discussion and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Department of the Navy or the Department of Defense."

Point of contact: Don Brutzman (brutzman at nps.edu)