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Before 1970, the widely accepted solution for disposal of old munitions, typically called unexploded ordnance (UXO), was to dump them into rivers, lakes and oceans. Today we know this creates a multitude of problems, the worst of which are pollution and the risk of an explosion.

According to, one of the groups working the problem is the Japan Mine Action Service (JMAS), a non-profit engaged in humanitarian activities to create better and safer living conditions. JMAS has implemented UXO clearance projects in a host of countries from Japan to Afghanistan. JW Fisher’s Pulse 12 boat-towed metal detector is assisting in these operations.

The Pulse 12 detector will locate both ferrous and nonferrous metals, an important feature as munitions can be made of a variety of metals including brass and steel.

With three detection heads attached to the master control console, an area up to 72-feet wide can be swept in one pass by the Pulse 12; saving time, fuel, and manpower. To inspect sites on land, the coil can be mounted on the front of an ATV or other vehicle allowing large areas to be swept quickly.

Law enforcement agencies around the world are acquiring underwater metal detectors (UMD) to ensure their dive teams have the right equipment to effectively do their jobs. An essential tool for locating evidence disposed of in a waterway, metal detectors routinely assist public safety divers in finding weapons, shell casings, stolen objects, and explosive devices.

Another organization using Fishers equipment in a similar operation is the Regional Centre for Underwater De-mining (RCUD) in Montenegro, which was part of the former Yugoslavia. After numerous fishermen and boaters were killed by these deadly devices, RCUD acquired a Fisher side scan to help locate the mines. The operation was a success. With the help of the sonar and trained divers, many explosives were found and removed from the country’s lakes and rivers. Today the sonar is being used for more peaceful purposes.