Kurdistan merges micro airplane to demining
Iraqi Kurdistan Mine Action Agency (IKMAA) tested flying a micro airplane hoping the new technology to be utilized in surveying minefields in the Region’s hard-to-reach mountainous areas.
With operating this Switzerland-made plane called Swinglet CAM, IKMAA aims to accelerate and push forward the demining operations and specifically in surveying the mined areas.
Flying micro airplane is the first experience adhered in Kurdistan Region. The test fly technically supported by Geneva International Center For Humanitarian Demining (GICHD was carried out on May 9th 2013 in an official ceremony.
The ceremony was attended by Mr. Siraj Barzani Head of IKMAA, Deputy Head Ali Hamad Beg, and a number of governmental and local officials as well as two experts from GICHD.
In a first test, the jet has taken several images of a minefield near Mergasor town, northeast of Erbil. For further confirmation, the same plane was tested again on 11th May 2013 in a minefield near Penjwen town in Suleimany province.
The aerial images taken by the jet in both tests has been extracted; now IKMAA experts are studying the results to notice the Swinglet CAM effectiveness, particularly for operation in the Kurdistan Region atmosphere.
The Swinglet CAM has a flight time of up to 30 minutes allowing to cover areas of up to 4sqkm in a single flight. With it's 16MP camera it can shoot aerial imagery at down to 3cm/pixel resolution. The images can then be used to create maps and elevation models with a precision of 5cm. The swinglet CAM can be used to survey purposes and especially for the mined areas which are hard to access. However, weather factors affect the image quality.
Due to its lightweight, Swinglet CAM can be carried, flied and caught while landing by mere hands without the need of using parachute or landing net.
The included eMotion 2 software lets the operator plan, simulate, monitor and control the trajectory of the Swinglet CAM both before and during flight. With simple drag & drop actions the operator can designate the area to be mapped and generate a flight plan; and with a
single mouse click one can update the mission or return the Swinglet CAM to its starting location. The Swinglet CAM is fully au- tonomous from take-off to landing. No piloting experience required: