Considering the number of conflicts currently destroying humanity at the moment it is more crucial than ever to focus on saving lives for a change. 20th century was according to some historians the bloodiest so far in human history and the start of 21st century so far has not been very promising for peace loving people. The conflicts, wars, border skirmishes, civil unrest have long reaching effects on people both on the physical and psychological level. Land mines have long been the most vicious weapon used under the disguise of defence and saving the lives of the troops that has killed and maimed more humans then it had the potential to save.
It is estimated that there are more than 110 million land mines planted in all parts of the world killing and wounding the upwards of 20,000 people every year. In some parts of the world like Vietnam, Afghanistan, Iraq, Angola, Colombia, and Cambodia generations have become crippled due to unidentified land miles that exploded under their feet. Every year it is estimated that 10 million land mines are produced all over the world and has now turned into a thriving global market with the net worth of $180 million.
Now a new initiative launched by a Dutch organization is aiming to develop a system that could specifically target land mines. According to the manufacturers the gadget is going to be 20 times fast then the traditional landmine sweeping techniques and could rid the world of the menace in less than a decade.
The device is named Mine Kafone Drone – ironic it seems considering the ill reputation drones have acquired in the war on terror – which is an airborne systems utilizing its sophisticated three tier system to remove the landmines.
In the first stage, the system undergoes a reconnaissance mission generating 3D aerial maps of the targeted site which identifies the hot zone for the mines with GPS way points. After the successful detection of the dangerous area, MKD then hovers as close as 4cm above the target point to detect the explosive with its robotic metal detecting arms. As the drone locates and detects the dangerous sites, it clearly geotags them in order to create a record of the explosive and its nature. In the final phase of the operation when the system is certain of the existence and nature of the explosive; it deploys a small detonator right above the mine with the help of its robotic gripping. The detonator is then controlled and activated from a remote location once the drone has safely flown away from the target site to a safer distance.
The firm has launched a Kickstarter campaign for $77,464 to achieve their ambitious goal. The MKD campaign has already touched the handsome mark of $131,015 thanks to their 3015 backers with 20 days still left for the campaign to end. MKD Kickstart campaign is unique in the sense that it has promised to send the backers a device as a gesture of gratitude towards their cause. Backers will receive a set of goodies including an MKD figurine, however for $1015 consumers will receive a kit to build their own MKD.