Context – Small Drones in Humanitarian Mine Action (HMA)

Above is the link to the presentation by John Fardoulis of Mobility Robotics from January 14th, 2021 during a webinar: The Certain Conventional Weapons Convention at 40: Evolution, Continued Relevance, Context, and Challenges organised by the Swedish Defense University and the United Nations Office for Disarmament Affairs (UNODA).

It might look easy, but context is of the utmost importance, putting the pieces of humanitarian mine action (HMA) the jigsaw puzzle together to actually achieve positive impact from the applied use of technology and innovation, under real-world field conditions.

The first part provides examples of typical technology and processes used in the field in during HMA work. The second part provides examples of how the use of a relatively new technology to HMA, small drones can make a difference. Lessons from the field are presented from the Odyssey 2025 Project which was delivered together with Humanity & Inclusion/Handicap International (, and the High Commission for Deming in Chad, the HCND. It was a project funded by the Belgian Department of Foreign affairs which ran in Chad from October 2018 until March 2020.

The following table from December 2020 editorial in the Journal of Conventional Weapons Destruction provides insight for those involved in research and development regarding how the journey to achieve a positive impact in the real world is a lot longer than just academic experiments in benign environments.

Steps in achieving a positive real-world impact