Minds Clearing Land Mines: Are you as smart as a rat?

Better not tread on me!

Some 26,000 people are killed and maimed by land mine explosions every year, nearly half of them children.  Various reports claim unexploded land mines lurk in 60-90 countries worldwide.  At least six million unexploded land mines remain in Angola.  Zimbabwe has around three million.  Participants in current conflicts are busy depositing many, many more.  Any way you add up the numbers, the result totals BAD.

Certified HeroRATs sniff out land mines.  Trained dogs do, too.  People use metal detectors and robots to find the deadly devices.  Some use only sticks.  And then comes the challenge of safe deactivation or detonation, as well as equipment maintenance under adverse conditions.  Land mine clearance has no “silver bullet” so far.

According to physics professor, John Scales, “Land mines are an enormous problem around the world for both military personnel and civilians…The reason so many people are working on this problem from so many angles, is there is no one scheme that works well all the time.  You need an arsenal of tools.”

People from many backgrounds invent tools to solve all sorts of problems.  You may be able to help solve this one.

Join our community of MINDS CLEARING LAND MINES and share your ideas.

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About mindsclearinglandmines
Minds Clearing Land Mines is an online community for learning about the global land mine clearance problem and sharing ideas to solve that problem. Author Laurel Anne Hill moderates the blog, as well as the Minds Clearing Landmines Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=100002526167943.

One Response to Minds Clearing Land Mines: Are you as smart as a rat?

  1. Be sure to check out the 5/4/11 article in the Harvard Gazette. Smartphones used with conventional metal detection technology may help de-miners better determine what they are detecting. This new procedure, in the testing stage, takes the approach of improving the de-miner.

    Go to:
    http://news.harvard.edu/gazette/story/2011/05/targeting-leftover-land-mines/

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