ARMED forces are to use high street drones for mine clearance and peace keeping operations in Cambodia and during United Nations missions around the world, following training from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan).

This is the first time that the Royal Cambodian Armed Forces has been provided with this technology to help with Cambodia’s significant problems with landmines.

Using these drones, the RCAF will now be able to map out terrain that could potentially contain mines and identify suspicious items or roadside devices without putting lives at risk by having to physically enter those spaces.

Both practical and classroom-based training for the quadcopter drones was provided by researchers from UCLan, the Furniture for Education Worldwide (FEW) charity and UNITE the Union, and was supported by UK-based photographer and commercial drone pilot, Dave Severns-Jones.

Dr. Darren Ansell, space and aerospace lead at UCLan and one of the leading trainers involved in the project, said: “It’s surprising that the use of drones to support mine clearance operations is not more common."