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Improvement of sampling system for Remote Explosive Scent Tracing
University of Skövde, School of Technology and Society.
University of Skövde, School of Technology and Society.
2010 (English)Independent thesis Basic level (degree of Bachelor), 20 credits / 30 HE creditsStudent thesis
Abstract [en]

Remote Explosives Scent Tracing (REST) is the concept of bringing the mine field to Mine Detection Dogs or Rats, instead of vice versa. This is done by collecting air or dust from minefields, and taking these samples to a laboratory environment, where they are subsequently analysed by the detection animals.

REST has previously proven to be very fast and cost effective, but one of the issues facing the method is that there is yet no reliable tool for sampling dust. In earlier sampling units, air has been collected in filters. However, the concentration of scents related to mines has been seen to be a million times higher in dust particles than in air sampled from above the ground. The aim of this project was to evaluate and improve a dust sampling prototype constructed in the beginning of 2010. The project was initiated in cooperation with the GICHD (Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian demining), and carried out in cooperation with APOPO (Anti-Personnel Landmines Detection Product Development).

During this project, information was gathered on the samplers that have previously been used for REST. A new prototype was made in Trondheim in cooperation with NTNU (Norwegian University of Science and Technology). With this new sampler prototype, tests were made in a laboratory environment at NTNU as well as at APOPO’s test mine field in Morogoro, Tanzania. Several obstacles were faced, such as difficulties to test and evaluate the sampler during the rainy season, insufficient air supply for the prototype, and issues with the laboratory equipment in Morogoro. Due to this, the number of tests performed and the number of repetitions of each test was not as high as would have been desired.

The results of the information gathering and the tests are presented in this report, and the knowledge and experience gained resulted in several suggestions for improvements for the sampler prototype. A suggestion for a grid design that would cover the entire mouth piece, with a built-in distance to the suction inlet, in order to avoid both clogging of the grid and that too much dust is sucked in if the mouth piece touches the ground and a fully adjustable sampling unit. Several other recommendations are given that would reduce cross contamination risks and improve ergonomics and other aspects of the sampler prototype.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2010. , 74 p.
Keyword [en]
REST, demining, area reduction, land release, sampler, handheld, rats
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:his:diva-4226OAI: oai:DiVA.org:his-4226DiVA: diva2:327910
Uppsok
Technology
Supervisors
Examiners
Available from: 2010-07-06 Created: 2010-06-30 Last updated: 2010-07-06Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
  • apa
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