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Martin Bell MP to Launch New Machine Designed to Take on the Most Impossible Mine Fields

Martin Bell MP is to make a special visit to the University of Warwick on Monday 6th July to launch a new machine designed to take on some of the toughest mine fields in the world and help return those mined areas to agricultural use by the local people.

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Called Tempest the sturdy car sized machine is designed to take on almost impossibly overgrown mine fields and open them up to precise manual mine clearing by human deminers. Almost all demining has to be carried out by human beings. This is a slow operation when you have a flat piece of ground but almost impossible when the passage of time has created jungle conditions on the top of a mined area. The remote controlled Tempest machine has been designed especially to smash into these overgrown mine fields and make them available for human deminers.

Its advantages are:

  • It is cheap to build (25,000 pounds ) and operate (about a quarter of the cost of its nearest competitor)
  • It can be built and serviced from locally available materials in developing countries
  • Its sturdy construction allows it to shrug off some some mine explosions
  • When it meets a mine big enough to explode and shut it down its design allows it to be easily and cheaply repaired and sent straight back into the minefield
  • It is smaller than most military vehicles and can thus be used on poor roads , weak bridges and other problem areas

Tempest was constructed only after the research team consulted widely with human deminning teams to find out exactly what sort of machine would benefit their work.  The machine, a joint project between the University of Warwick and the Development Technology Workshop Ltd, will this summer travel to Cambodia (and possibly Bosnia) to be tested on real mine fields.

Notes for editors:

1. Funding and equipment for Tempest has been donated by DFID, the Maurice Laing Memorial foundation, Bomford Turner of Evesham, and Lister Peter Engines of Gloucester

MORE INFORMATION: Peter Dunn 01203 523708

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CWN / News / Newswire / University of Warwick / 6 Jul 98

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This page modified on 10 November 2008 09:49:15AM 

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