Tuesday, February 12, 2008

MiCLiC, FMC, LCS etc.

Minefields and trappings are fast becoming a hindrance to troops engaged in operations in Vanni. Suitable mine clearing systems must be chosen and put to effective use, thereby saving valuable lives and the need to train more men at great costs. The following is a selection of some of the best methods available to counter that threat.

Flail Mine Clearers

Clearing mines using flail or a fast spinning drum of chains is a popular method in mine clearing operations. First tested in Cambodia and designed by the Japanese, HYDREMA 910 MVC is one of the best Flail Mine Clearers. The HYDREMA 910 MCV can successfully clear AP mines and clear a path through both rough and soft ground. The rotating flail detonates mines by cutting through them or ponding on them. These vehicles can also go on auto-pilot.

The downside to this method is the vulnerability of the vehicle in open warfare and exposure to high-pressure mines that can blow-up the vehicle. Hence it is used in post-conflict settings only (HYDREMA Article).

Mine Breaching Technology

Mine Breaching is a more effective system useful in combat settings. The objective of this method is to blast a path clear of mines. The traditional Bangalore Torpedoes, invented at the turn of the 20th Century, has limited potential. It is also an accident waiting to happen. (see video)


MiCLiC (Mine Clearing Line Charge) systems of the US Army can clear a 10m wide, 100m long stretch of cleared battlefield in seconds. It is battle-proven (Iraq) against insurgent forces with over 30 years of active duty under the Marine Corp. The downside is the price of this equipment (MiCLiC Video).

The Python (Giant Viper) system of the British Army is also battle-proven. It can create a 7m wide, 230m long range of clearance. (See Giant Viper Video)

The Python LCS
The Chinese equivalents are, by far the most accessible and affordable. The T-74 (Variant of T-762 chasis) is a copy of the MiCLiC. It is hardly battle-proven, yet worth a closer look. It clears a path 3-6m wide and 80-100m long (T-74 Article).

T-74 LCS mounted on Armoured Bulldozer
An alternative to the larger LCSs are the man-portable LCSs like the British Army RAMBS II. The israeli Military Industries offers perhaps the simplest such system available anywhere. It is the POMINS II system (Portable Mine Neutralisation System). This man-portable system can be operated by two men to clear a 50cm wide, 50m long path through, especially AP minefields. (POMINS-IMI)


admin said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Unknown said...

DW, but aren't all these methods drawing attention to troop movements and also provide only limited paths through minefields that could be easily targeted.

I have seen documentaries on the use of the US MiCLiC in Iraq and they appeared to be used only after the fighting had died down.

In a situation such as in mannar, would any of these devices be useful?


Anonymous said...

Great article and it's really great some guys think about a way to avoid LTTE mines/traps and saving SLA lives. My comments;

1) I think these machines are good in open areas but not in jungle areas. As SLA doesn't go along highways all the time this may be of little use when considering other small roots and jungle paths.

2) Even in an open area these machines will come under LTTE artilary fire when considering present wanni fronts and will be difficult to protect.

3) Using these machines will indicate SLA presence but that will not be an issue as tigers anyway get to know that, even know.


May be we should thank cyber tigers for giving valuable advices on buying military hardware for SLA, success for SL and keep reading DW blog. But I hope as DN, DW also delete unnecassary comments so that no one is motivated to reply and waste time.

Moshe Dyan said...

great reasoning guys.

the reality is that our bulldozers are getting hit by shells and one mine clearing equipment struck means a few million dollars and yes, there is a VERY HIGH probability of this happening.

may be you are coming to my strategy; no big deal though

use SLAF planes and gunships to target and kill as many tigers as possible along FDLs; simply make tiger FDLs a KILLING FIELD; use of guns as well as bombs is the way to go for the SLAF.

also take the LTTE arti. / mortar guns.

when the coast is clear after killing a few hundred or thousand, use mine clearers and (other means) to help soldiers advance; even that under air cover.

in a really hard-up case (we are not in it) i do not mind setting the jungle/bush alight if required to expel the bloody tigers and shoot them from air while escaping.

Unknown said...

Man ur gud DW.Ur doin a g8 job here!!

Jambudipa said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jambudipa said...

Airborne landmine survey system

Currently looking for funding and test beds.


Moshe Dyan said...


thanks. airbourne thats the way to go for most things. but practically this machine would not help us much.

Jambudipa said...


The attached technical doc show UWB SYNTHETIC APERTURE RADAR detecting metal objects from high altitude.

Think of applications other than mine detection. It will reveal hidden artillery and mortar tubes as well. If the technology works, why can't military R&D look into it ?

Moshe Dyan said...

yes, totally agree with you. we need a military R&D division to look into these possibilities.

in an earlier post i mentioned about the 'possibility' of using airships and balloons for intelligence gathering, etc. based on what i read somewhere in a forum.

to meet the LTTE challenge we also must innovate; air bourne is the way to go.

i couldn't get the second link first; it is not complete. i went to the site thereafter.

Moshe Dyan said...

metal detection can help very well in jungle warfare, ocean warfare, landmines, bunkers, concealed weapons, weapons transport, locating heavy guns, etc.

a great find panhinda. is there anyway to bring these to the attention to Gota or someone?

Kasunsiri said...

I saw a mine clearing vehicle at 'Dayata Kirula' and its from Croatia . Any info on this ?

Renegade! said...

Way to go,Defencewire!!...just the kind of article i was craving for..keep it up!!

LKDOOD said...


great article !

mines are a huge problem :(

LKDOOD said...

Testing times ahead of local elections in east


LKDOOD said...

Update: Fighting claims 45 rebels, 16 soldiers in Lanka


Defencewire said...

This is why we have ended the article suggesting POMINS II and RAMB. Chinese are also developing rifle grenades to clear mine paths, similar to RAMB. These are cheap, fast and effective.

The LCS, due to its flexible cord, can go over thick bush, but can still destroy mines below.

CASC said...

I recently saw on the Russian TV channel, RussiaToday, a feature on a military exercise where they referred to a Russian mine remover that was employed in the exercise. There were no details. If Russia is offering military aid, this might be a subject worth raising with them.

Kenneth Abeywickrama.

Unknown said...

What's the latest news on the front line?

TamilNet is reporting something major 42 sla killed?, but any confirmation from SLA side?

Defencewire said...

Pallaikuli was captured long time ago. What more fighting in the area we do not know ;)

Defencewire said...

I think you are talking of the BOZENA 4. That too is a flail system similar to HYDREMA 910. Croatia started clearing mines after the war. We have to do it while fighting.

Defencewire said...

Claymore blast in Vavuniya. 2 SLA KIA. Yesterday's death toll in Thaladi attack is 6 SLA. 6 more WIA. No civilians or priests killed or injured. SLA was cleaning church for forthcoming feast. Army suspect LTTE spotter give time and coordinates from inside church.

NOLTTE=Peace said...

Nice article


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