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a portable instrument for the detection of mines set in the ground or underwater. It is used for making passages in enemy minefields and for clearing mines from the terrain.
A mine detector usually includes a searching device (a frame, plate, or cylinder), a generator of electrical oscillations, an indicator (sound, visual, or other), and sources of electric current. It permits the detection of mines set in the ground to depths of 50 cm or in a body of water to depths of 1 m. Most present-day mine detectors are operated by one individual. The search for nonmetallic mines is conducted with a probe or other means.
The first mine detector was created in the USSR in 1936 by military engineer B. la. Kudymov. A refined model developed in 1939 was used by Soviet forces in the Soviet-Finnish War of 1939–40 and in the Great Patriotic War of 1941–45. During World War II (1939–5) the mine detector was the primary means used by all the warring armies to reconnoiter minefields.