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Windows Phone App Detects and Finds Landmines to Save Lives

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SAPER is a new Windows Phone app that can help solve a real-world problem: landmines.

According to Neowin, SAPER comes from a team at the Military University of Technology in Warsaw. The app uses magnetic fields to detect landmines in a small area. If users of the app find a landmine the app can check a database of recorded mines to see if it’s a known location, or report the mine if it isn’t known.

The video for the app contains some graphic images of landmine victims, and shows part of the team using the app to find a buried landmine outside Warsaw. We wouldn’t recommend using the app to go in search of landmines, however, these guys attend a military university, so we assume they know what they’re doing.

SAPER, which stands for Sensor Amplified Perception for Explosives Recognition, uses Bing Maps to map landmine locations. It’s not a perfect way to find mines, but it’s far easier to access than a standard landmine detector. It’s likely less expensive as well.

The app works by reading the background magnetic fields of an area, users then put a 30cm grid on the area they want to check. The app connects to the cloud to see if the magnetic fields it reads match known explosive devices.

Unlike most mobile apps, SAPER actually has the ability to save lives by making it easier to find landmines. The team created the app as part of the Imagine Cup app competition. The finals of the competition are in July.

Shawn is a tech junkie who spends most of his time reading and writing about it. You can follow him on Twitter, @shawn_i.

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