GPS-Equipped ‘Tumbleweed’ Is Eco-Friendly Minesweeper
Using bamboo rods, Hassani fashioned a spherical device light enough to be propelled by the breeze. On the outer end of this tumbling starburst are mine-sized discs made frombiodegradable plastic. At the heart of the sphere, called Mine Kafon, is a GPS computer. The idea is that these rolling minesweepers could be unleashed in an area known to be riddled with mines. The wind would blow it around randomly, and more than likely trigger a mine or two. It’s possible that a stiff wind could blow Mine Kafon over a mine, triggering it quickly, before blowing away. In most cases, detonation would destroy the sphere as well as the mine, but if it does, the materials are relatively benign. As Gadgetose points out, the explosion triggers the integrated GPS to log the location of the mine so the area can be noted and swept at a later time.