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Publication numberUS2489564 A
Publication typeGrant
Publication dateNov 29, 1949
Filing dateAug 31, 1945
Priority dateMar 24, 1942
Publication numberUS 2489564 A, US 2489564A, US-A-2489564, US2489564 A, US2489564A
InventorsToit Abraham Stefanus Jacob Du
Original AssigneeToit Abraham Stefanus Jacob Du
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Apparatus for clearing land mines or mine fields
US 2489564 A
Abstract  available in
Previous page
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Claims  available in
Description  (OCR text may contain errors)

Nov. 29, 1949 A. 5. J. DU TOlT APPARATUS FOR CLEARING LAND MINES OR MINEFIELDS 3 Shets-Shet 1 Filed Aug. 31, 1945 i. 5. (7, dag/T002: Q M

Nov. 29, 1949 A. 5. J. DU TOIT 2,489,564


Nov. 29, 1949 A. 5. J. DU TOlT APPARATUS FOR CLEARING LAND MINES OR MINEFIELDS Filed Aug. 51, 1945 3 Sheets-Sheet 3 Patented Nov. 29, i949 APnARATfis'FoR CLEARING LAND MINES R MINE FIELDS Abraham Stefanus J acobus du Toit, Transvaal, Union of South Africa Application Augu'st31, 1945, Serial No. 613,812 In Great Britain March 24, 1942 Section 2, Public Law 690, August 8, 1946 Claims. (01. 89-1) The present invention relates to apparatusfor exploding landfl'mines and particularly pertains to a plurality of. flexible flails which are so moimted and driven as tostrike the ground and detonate the explosive charges of a mine field.

An object ofthepresent invention is to devise effective means 'j'for dealing with land mines in such a mannerthat they may be exploded harmlessly so that, for example, a defensive minefield may be rapidly and efliciently cleared in the sense that the mines are rendered harmless and the minefield, or a portion of the same, may thus be safely traversed by tanks or other vehicles or by infantry.

The invention consists in an attachment for a tank or other mobile unit comprising a heater device adapted to be carried in advance of the unit and to strike the ground surface and thus detonate well in advance of the unit any mine laid in the vicinity where a blow is struck.

The invention also consists in an attachment for a tank or other mobile unit comprising a rotary member or rotor carrying a plurality of chains or like flexible members disposed tozstrike the ground surface in advance of the unit and thus explode anymines laid in the vicinity of the points struck by the flexible members.

The inventionalso consists in the provision of means for varying the height above ground at I which the rotary member is carried as may be required by the contour of the ground surface.

Further features of the invention will be apparent from the description given hereafter.

The accompanying drawings illustrate one mode of carrying out the invention.

Figure 1 is a side elevation, more or less diagrammatic, showing a part of a tank with one form of attachment in accordance with the invention.

'Figure 2 is a plan on a somewhat larger scale of a portion of the attachment.

Figure 3 is a side view on a larger scale of a part of the attachment, looking at the opposite side from that shown in Figure 1.

Figures 4 to 6 are detail views showing one form of flexible member that may be employed.

In carrying my invention into effect in one convenient manner I form my improved mine-clearing device as an attachment to be fitted at the front end of a tank a. In one construction the attachment comprises a substantially U-shaped frame with the limbs disposed forwardly of the tank While the base or rear end of the U member is pivoted upon the body of the tank or upon brackets carried thereby.

In the particular construction shown, the attachment consists of two channel arms b connected near their rear ends by cross tubes c which may be flanged so that the flanges may be bolted to the channels, or may be secured thereto in any other convenient manner. Welded or otherwise secured to these tubes near each end thereof is a plate 01 to which are fitted the pivot bushes on which the arms rotate, the plates being extended to form levers for a reason hereinafter explained.

At the forward end of the frame I rotatably mount a. drum extending transversely of the tank and conveniently the drum is made of cage-like form so that it is not likely to be damaged by the blast from exploding mines.

In the form shown, the drum or rotor comprises a steel tube or other shaft e into the ends of which are welded hubs to which are secured end plates or discs J. To the shaft are secured four sets of arms at right angles to one another and equally spaced along the shaft. The arms are denoted by the references gg', 9 9 9 and g and are all tied together and to the end discs 1 by angles h sets of chains extending transversely of the tank and adapted, as the drum or the cage is revolved, to beat or "flail" the ground surface well in advance of the tank and experience has shown that even with a moderate rotation of the drum of, say, to revolutions per minute the blows struck by the chains will be suflicient to detonate any mines laid in the vicinity of the points where such blows are struck even though these mines may be buried a relatively considerable distance below the actual ground surface.

bility to ensure good ground cover by maintaining the chains in position, I prefer the arrangement seen most clearly in Figure 2. In this construction, the arms gg have attached to them, a series of links 2' attached by T-pieces' to two tubes. 7070', the adjacent ends of which are chamfered, as shown, to allow freedom of movement in one direction. The chains Z are attached to the tubes by swivels Z located between collars L the swivelspreventing the chains from coiling themselves round the tubes.

The form of chain which has been found very satisfactory in practice is that shown in Figures 5 to 7 and consists of the chain Z reinforced for half its length by two steel wire ropes mn (one only being shown in Figure 7 for clearness) threaded through two adjacent links next to the end links which are attached to the tube It or k. The'cables are threaded through diagonally and are clipped to the chain at intervals by the clips and cross bolt 0'. The free ends of each cable are united by a steel or other sleeve p into which they are soldered.

The drum or cage may be rotated either from the tank motor or'from one of the track sprockets thereof or preferably as shown from a separate motor q disposed in a housing at the side of w'ormand worm wheel to the adjacent arm I). If

desired, I may employ duplicate drives, one to each end of the drum, and with a separate engine for each drive.

It will be clear that when the vehicle is moving over ground surface the contour of which is changing, the height of the drum or cage rotor may require tobe changed from time to time in order that the chainsor flexible members may strike the ground surface properly and this is cdnveniently effected by means of hydraulic jacks s carried at the sides of the tank and operating upon arms'or-leversconstituted by the extensions of the plates 01 secured to the pivots of the frame. so that the inclination of the latter may be varied as required and as shown by the dotted lines in Figure 1. In this connection it will be understood that the controls for the drive and for the adjustment of the elevation of the rotary device are located inside the tank so as to be operable from within.

From the foregoing description it will be seen that I have provided a simple form of attachment. for a mobile unitwhich is so constructed as to be liable to little or no damage from blast of exploding mines and which is under the control of an operator protected from such blast, and at the same time the device is such that it will successively-detonate all mines buried in the path or track taken by the vehicle. Thus I am able com- 0 movement of the' h l 4. Apparatus for detonatingiand minesoome. prising, a propelled ve'hicle,. a.pair of spaced ar'i'z'is mounted on and'extendin'g forwardly" from :said vehicle, a cage-like druniarran'ged transversely. 55 of the arms and supportedfor rotation on said, arms, means forrotat in'gsaid drum, and flexible; members connected to said drum of such lengths as to engage the ground in advance of. the drum...

70 forward ends the ground.


pletely to clear a path through a minefield which may be safely traversed by following vehicles or infantry and the extent of the area cleared may be varied by varying the width of the attachment 5 and/ or by using a number of the same carried by vehicles taking different paths or tracks.

The invention is not to be limited to the foregoing details which are given by way of example only as I may modify the form of heaters and 10 the means by which they are carried and driven depending upon any practical requirements; for example, the chains may be're'plac'ed by lengths of cable or'Imay" employspring arms or other suitable flexible members and in some cases particularly when employing chains the device may be rendered more effective byattaching a ball at .the end of each of the chains.

I claim: l. A device for exploding land mines compris- 2 mg a shaft, means supporting the shaft above the ground and for movement on a given path of travel, means rotating the shaft in the course of its movement on such path, and flexibly jointed fiails attached to the shaft and of such a length so that as thesshaft rotates the flails strike the ground. in advanceof the shaft.

2. A, device for expl'oding'land mines comprisflails attached to the shaft and of such a length that as the shaftrotates the flails strike the ground, in advance of the shaft, and means for adjusting the position of the" shaft with refer? ence to the ground.

3. A. sweeper for land mines .comprising, frame arms provided with pivotal mountings for connection with a propelling vehicle,'said arms being 40 disposed to extend forwardly of the vehicle, a

' shaft extending transversely between the arms and mounted for rotation on said arms, chains j attached to the"shaft,.meanfs including a prime mover providedi'with driving connections forthe actuation of said shaftat asp'eed to di'stend the "respective chains cir umfer'entially, and the length of said chains exceeding'the height of the shaft from the'surfacej traversed wherebyjthe '1 chains will flail-such surface in advance of the,

as the drum is rotatedQ,

5. Apparatus for detonating land mines com 1 prising, a propelled vehicle,,a pair of spaced arms mounted on and extending forwardly from .saidv vehicle, a cage like' arranged transverselyl'f of the arms and supp'ortedfor rotation on said? 6 arms, means for rotating said drum, flexible members connected tdsaid' drum and of such lengths as to engage' the'ground. in' advance of the drum as. the drum is'rotated, and hydraulic actuated"means'for adjusting the position ofthe. of said arms'iandthe drum above (References on {following page) 6 REFERENCES CITED Number Name Date 1613 997 Hanson Jan 11 1927 The followmg references are of record in the file of this patent: 2,231,875 Behnke et a1. Feb. 18, 1941 UNITED STATES PATENTS FOREIGN PATENTS Number Country Date Number Name Date 103,036 Great Britain Jan. 11, 191':

1,035,056 Shubert et a1. Aug. 6, 1912 1 205,310 Great Brltam Oct. 19, 1923 1,263,965 Twltchel Apr. 23, 1918 665 817 G m 0 t 4 1938 1,272,168 Youngren July 9,1918 er any 1,289,196 Koszkowski Dec. 31, 1918 m OTHER REFERENCES 1,305,637 Zajac June 3, 1919 1,361,591 Kmhn 7, 1920 p lg gm nd T m Dlspa u 30, 44.

1,505,572 McDonald Aug. 19, 1924 u n 1,542,963 Russell June 23' 1925 Popular Mechanics, Sept. 1944,page 6.

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Referenced by
Citing PatentFiling datePublication dateApplicantTitle
US2833143 *Apr 25, 1955May 6, 1958Monroe Calculating MachineApparatus for detecting land mines
US3498177 *Sep 16, 1968Mar 3, 1970Alberto MoroMine clearing machine
US3837259 *Jun 28, 1973Sep 24, 1974Us ArmyCombat tracked vehicle signature duplicator
US4765221 *Sep 4, 1987Aug 23, 1988Krupp Mak Maschinenbau GmbhArrangement for receiving working devices on vehicles, especially chain-equipped vehicles
US4987819 *Oct 17, 1989Jan 29, 1991Aardvark Clear Mine LimitedFlail system for a terrain clearance system
US5007325 *Feb 22, 1990Apr 16, 1991Aardvark Clear Mine Limited Of Shevock FarmApparatus for clearing mines
US5442990 *Mar 25, 1994Aug 22, 1995Krohn; WalterTracked vehicle
US6619177 *Aug 29, 2000Sep 16, 2003Norwegian Demining Consortium AsDevice; especially for clearing of land mines
US6892622 *Aug 8, 2003May 17, 2005John E. WatsonAnti-mine unit
US20040050558 *Aug 8, 2003Mar 18, 2004Watson John E.Anti-mine unit
US20050235815 *Feb 2, 2005Oct 27, 2005Vikram ShankhlaKnee link flail (KLF) system
EP0190510A1 *Dec 30, 1985Aug 13, 1986Aardvark Clear Mine LimitedApparatus for clearing mines
WO1997046848A2 *Jun 3, 1997Dec 11, 1997Gedalyahu ManorGround clearing apparatus and method
U.S. Classification89/1.13
International ClassificationF41H11/16
Cooperative ClassificationF41H11/18
European ClassificationF41H11/18