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Presentation Discussion

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    joseph dillon

    May 22, 2012 | 01:04 p.m.

    This technology represents an important and significant advance in mine detection. It perhaps could lead to a change in direction to our defenses against terrorists.

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    RIck Moore

    May 22, 2012 | 03:09 p.m.

    I understand this can be accomplished with a $50 radar module… is this true?

  • Icon for: Margery Hines

    Margery Hines

    May 23, 2012 | 08:19 p.m.

    Yes, GPR is a mature technology and therefore the equipment is relatively inexpensive, particularly in comparison to alternative technologies. This is a major advantage of this design for humanitarian demining since many countries that are affected by landmine presence cannot afford expensive solutions.

  • Icon for: Lloyd Nackley

    Lloyd Nackley

    May 23, 2012 | 07:25 p.m.

    Important topic thanks for sharing. You said this works for a landmind buried at 10cm depth, is that pretty common? How effective is that robot able of tiptoeing though the land mine field? (or does it not have to get too close/ cheap enough that it’s ok if it goes boom?) What if the robot gets stuck like that Mars rover on rock years ago, do the undergrad. assistants get sent in? All in all great project I hope it helps make the world safer.

  • Icon for: Margery Hines

    Margery Hines

    May 24, 2012 | 07:48 p.m.

    Thank you for your interest and checking out my work! This has been a very fun and interesting project and I have been lucky to work on it since the very beginning.
    10cm is a typical depth for anti-personnel landmines. At this depth they are concealed from sight, but shallow enough to be triggered. We have also looked at 5cm and 15cm with the same success.
    Our plan with the robot is to have it walk a designated route. It can “see” landmines before fully approaching them, but we probably will not incorporate this knowledge into the walking path, since+ we don’t believe the robot will exert enough pressure to trigger the landmines. If the robot does get stuck (such as the Mars rover), then there would probably be deminers nearby to assist.

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Icon for: Margery Hines


Northeastern University
Years in Grad School: 3

Modeling the Detection and Localization of Anti-Personnel Landmines using Ground-Contact Antennas for Ground-Penetrating Radar

In 2011, over 5,000 casualties due to landmines were reported worldwide, necessitating the development of effective detection techniques. Over the last few decades ground penetrating radar (GPR) has developed into a popular tool for subsurface imaging and a promising technique to fulfill this requirement. However, landmines are typically buried under rough ground surfaces where conventional air-coupled GPR data is difficult to analyze, as the surface scatters the signal in unpredictable ways. This is particularly true for small non-metallic mines which have very small radar contrast with the soil background. By utilizing a ground-contact radar system, wave penetration is dramatically improved and data analysis is simplified.

This work demonstrates the feasibility of using three bistatic ground-coupled antennas to triangulate the location of a landmine buried in rough, dispersive soil using a geometric analysis. Additionally, the limitations of this method are analyzed with regard to the correlation length and height variance of the rough surface. In this work the received GPR data is simulated using a 3-dimensional finite-difference time-domain (FDTD) model. As shown in the results, the presented method is highly effective in both detecting and locating the target independent of the landmine casing and the surface parameters. Though this research currently focuses on localizing landmines, this technology will have numerous potential imaging applications for cases when traditional GPR cannot be used due to the roughness of the surface.