Mine Kafon mine detonator

Wind-powered mine detonator on Kickstarter

News: a project to bring cheap and easy-to-build mine detonators to Afghan minefields has just nine days left to raise the final £14,000 of its £100,000 goal on crowdfunding website Kickstarter.

Conceived by Design Academy Eindhoven graduate Massoud Hassani, who grew up in Kabul, Afghanistan, Mine Kafon is made of bamboo and biodegradable plastic, and rolls along the ground like tumbleweed.

Mine Kafon mine detonator

Light enough to be propelled by the wind, the detonator is also heavy enough to set off mines as it rolls over them with its round feet, as Hassani explains in this movie filmed by Dezeen at the Design Academy Eindhoven My Way talks in Milan last year (below).

"Every ball has GPS navigation integrated into it," he says. "You can see the balls on the internet, so you can see where they went and how many mines they touched. You can also select an area and it will calculate how safe the area is."

With each detonation the Mine Kafon loses only a few legs, so it can destroy three or four landmines in one journey. The construction is modular so components that return in one piece can easily be reused and sent out again.

Hassani's team is hoping to raise £100,000 through Kickstarter to cover the cost of engineering, fabrication and transportation to an affected region, as well as making a short documentary.

Mine Kafon mine detonator

Trend forecaster Li Edelkoort commented on Mine Kafon during her Dezeen Live talk during London Design Festival last year, noting that the design originated from a paper toy Hassani had played with in his youth. "It’s a mine killer, but it's completely organic and very cheap," she said, adding, "it’s very beautiful how a childhood toy can become such an amazing device."

The design made the shortlist of the Design Museum's Designs of the Year 2012 and has also been acquired by MoMA in New York, where it will be exhibited from March.

Above: Hassani introduces Mine Kafon in this movie for Kickstarter

We've featured many projects launched on Kickstarter, including squishy headgear that lets you take a power nap wherever you are and a watch strap for an iPod Nano that raised $1 million on the crowdfunding website.

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Photographs are by Massoud Hassani.