UXO Survey

Geomines’ teams carry out pyrotechnic diagnoses in the context of the rehabilitation of areas polluted by explosive ordnance. Suspicion of such pollution may be based on historical studies, the discovery of devices during earthworks or on the basis of non-technical surveys.

Geomines also conducts pyrotechnic diagnoses in underwater environments in the context of port infrastructure works, wind turbine field installation or submarine cable-laying. Undertaking these studies makes it possible to carry out explosives’ clearance and probing/scanning or drilling security operations.

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Historical studies of pyrotechnic pollution

Considering the risk of explosives’ pollution is mandatory for local authorities and public works companies, both for infrastructure construction and in the case of property transfers.

Historical studies highlight presumptions of pyrotechnic pollution. They qualify and quantify residual munitionary risks, while estimating how they are distributed across the site studied.

The conclusions of historical studies are taken into consideration during the design phase of a project, leading to the further field investigations deemed necessary.

They can lead to operations such as searches, neutralisation or the removal and destruction of ammunition, traps, devices and explosives.

Pyrotechnic pollution concerns all types of ammunition, whether it has been fired (artillery ammunition, mortars or rockets), dropped (bombs, submunitions, naval mines or torpedoes), thrown (grenades) or laid (landmines).

Because of the complexity of their firing mechanism and their usage conditions (soil too loose, altitude too low), a significant percentage of the ammunition used during the last world wars did not detonate.

All or part of such munitions are likely to be found on military or test sites, combat areas (1914-1918 and 1939-1945 wars), or more generally in any infrastructure of strategic interest during conflicts (railway areas, sea and river ports, production sites, fuel depots or storage centres).

Such ammunition is generally in storage condition or well-fired and armed. In other, rarer cases, it has just been left behind.

The effects of time lead to the gradual deterioration of the components, only increasing their lethal potential.

UXO detection methodology

Explosives pollution diagnosis operations search for anomalies buried in the ground with the help of geophysical measurement tools.

The operations conducted by Geomines’ teams enable the detection, characterisation and analysis of data in order to discriminate and select anomalies that are similar to explosive remnants.

For the most complex operations, Geomines also relies on the expertise of TELLUS Environnement, a company specialising in geophysical data processing. Pyrotechnic pollution diagnosis operations are conducted by multidisciplinary teams, depending on the equipment and technologies to be used.

The methodology used by Geomines to conduct such explosives’ diagnoses includes a preparatory phase: field installation, visual safety recognition and the clearing or dismantling of structures, among others.

Geomines has the necessary equipment to perform pyrotechnic pollution diagnoses depending on the terrain encountered and the nature of the objects sought: magnetometric detection (Magnex 120, 3-8 probes, caesium vapour, etc.), electromagnetic detection (UPEX 740M, Minelab F3, EM61 MK2, etc.) and GeoRadar scanning (single probe SIR 3000 and multi-antenna Stream X).

Geomines also has equipment for maritime diagnoses (sonar, magnetometer, sediment sounder).

Our other services

The Risk&Co Group assists its clients with all services relating to the dismantling and management of ammunition stockpiles.


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