Anti-Landmine Robotic Shoe
A novel design for an anti-landmine shoe has been proposed by F.K. Fuss and M.A. Tan. The design of the robotic mine-shoe calls for a set of at least three support legs extending from a foot plate.
(Anti-landmine shoe responds to mine detection)
Each of the support legs consists of the following elements:
The authors estimate that the optimal set-up would involve six legs. In the prototype, the leg could respond in less than 30 milliseconds.
- a metal detector at the base of the "foot pad" to sense the mine
- An actuator at the joint of the leg; the actuator can either allow a load to be sustained, or, in the event that a mine is detected, can cause the leg to carry no weight. The weight of the plastic leg is not sufficient to set of the mine.
- The actuation of the support leg can be either passive (as described above) or active - raising the leg above the suspected mine.
Apparently, there really are anti-mine shoes; the Guartel Technologies Mine Shoes use the air cushions to spread the weight of the user across a greater area.
(Anti-mine inflatable shoe)
The MedEng Spider Boot is another effort with what appears to be a substantial amount of research behind it; it bears an obvious resemblance to the robotic anti-landmine shoe described above.
It is estimated that from fifteen to twenty thousand people are killed or maimed by anti-personnel landmines every year; deminers are obviously subjected to terrible danger in the course of their work. Novel designs and new approaches are always welcome; more research and development are needed.
Read more at Development of a Novel Anti-Landmine Shoe; found this story here.
Scroll down for more stories in the same category. (Story submitted 4/30/2006)
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