Social Issues November 18, 2012
Brilliant Idea: A Landmine Sweeper Powered By Nothing But The Wind

In the film above, Massoud Hassani says "most people who live in Kabul will know someone who has been hurt or killed by a landmine."

In fact, landmines continue to be a danger in many places around the world - Human Rights Watch reported back in March that Syrian forces were planting landmines near the borders with Turkey and Lebanon, and according to, there are about 110 million anti-personnel mines in the ground worldwide.

But Hassani is doing something about it: he's created a prototype for a minesweeper that is made from bamboo and plastic.


It's called the Mine Kafon, and it's powered by nothing but wind.

Basically, the Mine Kafon is a giant tumbleweed, but with enough weight to detonate any mines it rolls over.

Each time it encounters a mine, it loses several of its "feet," but it will continue to roll, meaning that one Mine Kafon could potentially destroy four or five mines in a single trip.


When you consider that the estimated cost of defusing a single mine is more than $1200, the roughly $50 it costs to build one of these tumbling devices seems incredibly affordable.

Hassani based the design on toys he used to build with his friends as a kid, which they would race across the desert using the wind as propulsion.


The invention and the short film above is part of the Focus Forward Filmmaking Competition. If Hassani wins, he'll get $100,000, which could fund 2000 Mine Kafons.

If you like the idea and want to support it, you can vote at the end of the video.


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