Human Side(s) Of UAV –Mine Detection Operations And Solutions

Dear friends,

Although only five months young, dronologista blog has grown and needs a new attire.

As of 1st of September, moves to a new hosting, new address and slightly changes the appearance . Content will remain the same, and dronologista will continue to provide information about non-military drones only.


Twenty thousand. Once again, 20.000. Reasonable question arises after this meaningless number is mentioned. What does it mean and what implications does it have on us? It implies that only in 2013, about 20.000 individuals suffered injuries or passed away as a result of “successful“ performance of land mines all over the world around 78 countries. Pretty scary, shady and dramatic introduction for today’s topic. I am going to try to put the light at the end of the tunnel.

As dronologista mentioned in one of previous posts, the idea is not brand new. Definitely one of the break-through projects was the pioneer project in Croatia, named ARC – Airborne Minefield Area Reduction. The project was developed with a generous support of EU between 2001 and 2003. Helicopter UAV (supported by Mine Information System – MIS) combined with GIS database were the backbone of the project. MIS contains information about mine incidents, drawing, reference maps, etc. Furthermore, it was concluded to be promising and that more research has to be done in order to gain more knowledge and experience. However, since then nothing particularly important happened in this regard, and it seems that whole project is set aside, unfortunately.

ARC Croatia

ARC Croatia

On the other side, we have one Caucasus’s state which is already investing considerable amount of money in developing drones which are going to carry sensors in order to detect mines and at the same time making a huge step ahead in this area. Azerbeijan’s R&D is partly based on the Croatian case as well. The catch about this “aerial vehicle“, as they are used to say (ANAMA), is that it is going to search for a soil distortion in chemical respect which is to be considered as a direct result of mine existance on the particular area. Quite imaginary and ambitious for a laymen, but definitely the long-shot idea which promises a lot. However the technical details are scarce at the moment.



Together with various countries and international organizations fully engaged in the de-mining issue, there is a solution named eBee manufactured by Swiss company SenseFly Ltd. Referring to the previous text about eBee’s here, it is supposed to bring additional advantages such as 3D flight planning and optical terrain sensor, enabling successful operation in mountainous and remote areas. Moreover it has been already deployed in North Iraq by Iraqi Kurdistan Mine Action Agency (IKMAA) for independent testings and researches. One of the first examples of explicit human usage of UAV systems.

All in all, there are listed some of the solutions that is possible to employ. It goes without saying that this technology (as many other) has its bright and dark sides. As for advantages the list is rather long starting with civilian benefits, protecting the personal and individual on the ground, efficiency and time cut and at the very end of the list is cost downsize. On the other side, one of the main disadvantage is reliability of the whole system, as well how the whole system is going to be updated about different and new sorts of improvised explosive devices which are stunningly hard to discover even on the ground.

More improvements are to be expected in this specifically delicate area and dangerous area. Moreover, I would like to come up with the fact that approximately 110 million explosives devices are unevenly located on the planet influencing the life, as a rule, of the poorest share of population. The possible negative impact is only up to your imagination. But luckily more and more UAV systems are to be deployed in order to facilitate life of those affected the most. Because of the human dimension and overall importance of the topic, dronologista is going to update you on any news that come up. Stay tuned.

Pictures taken from sensefly, ANAMA , ARC.


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