Landmines and Explosive Remnants of War (ERW, e.g. cluster ammunition) are a threat to human life and economic development of nations emerged from conflicts. Land Release in Mine Action is the process where the demining community identifies and releases uncontaminated land and prioritizes suspected hazardous areas for a staged approach of ever closer investigation. Within a given budget the objective of this investigation is not so much to find and remove as many mines/ERW as possible, rather to achieve a maximum socio-economic benefit for affected populations. The investigation starts at national/regional level and eventually leads to localization and safe removal of the explosive contamination within the most critical individual minefields, after which these areas can be returned to the community. Land Release in Mine Action could benefit significantly from space asset capabilities. Earth Observation data, Satellite Communication and Satellite Navigation could e.g. help to:
- Produce socio-economic impact maps for better informed suspected area prioritization by mine action decision makers.
- Identify low-risk areas for increased land release before mine clearance action is even started, by combination of collected indicators of mine/ERW presence and absence (geo-referenced in-situ reports, land and infrastructure usage, topography, damage, bombing patterns).
- Characterise the environmental setting of a hazardous area (humidity, slope, surface roughness), which helps to select the most appropriate detection tools and the right time for their deployment.
- Support the geo-referencing of data and the navigation needs for non-technical surveys, stand-off detection, demarcation of hazardous zones, close-in detection and clearance.
- Provide global communication capabilities to securely transfer collected data into IMSMA (Information Management System for Mine Action), for easier access to updated consolidated information, improved traceability and quality management of mine action.
The study shall produce a concept for space enabled services supporting Land Release in Mine Action at its various stages. It will assess their added value, affordability and viability, and will prepare the roadmap for a possible pre-operational demonstration. It is endorsed by the Geneva International Center for Humanitarian Demining (GICHD) to secure the user perspective and relevance, as well as by the International Astronautical Federation (IAF). Developers, users and service-providers within the space and the mine action community are encouraged to join up and submit a bid.
A detailed description of the study requirements (Statement of Work and other documents) is available through EMITS and can also be found below. Two clarifications have been issued since the opening of the tender (see Clarification n. 1 and Clarification n. 2).
Please note: the documents on EMITS take precedence in case of any discrepancies.
ESA will present some highlights of the Statement of Work at the 7th International Symposium on Humanitarian Demining (Croatia, April 27th - 29th 2010). This event is also an opportunity to meet relevant stakeholders to constitute a bidding consortium. On-line resources may prove useful to identify the adequate organisations (e.g. http://www.mineaction.org/ and http://www.esa.int/SPECIALS/Industry/). For further information or to express interest please contact iap [at] esa [dot] int.