Surface Forces: The Perfect Bottom Mine


November 1, 2005: The Finnish government owned Patria Advanced Solutions Oy company, has introduced a formidable new naval mine; the M2. This is a "smart naval mine, containing its own computer, and able to detect targets via acoustic (detecting the sound of the target ship), pressure (detecting the pressure on the water a ship over head makes), and magnetic (detecting the metal in a ship) sensors. Many details of this bottom (it is placed on the sea bed of shallow coastal waters) mine are classified. The Finns are manufacturing this mine for their own defense, and export to select customers (those unlikely to attack Finland). The mine is believed to have an electrical field sensor as well, and that it can be detonated by remote control. The computer in the mine is programmable, so the mine can be instructed to attack only certain types of ships.

But the most interesting aspect of this mine is that it was made with COTS (Commercial, Off-The Shelf) components. That means that many other nations, with a sufficient supply of capable engineers, could build a similar mine. It also means the M2 is probably very cheap, without the expense of a lot of custom made (and developed) parts. A weapon like this, in the hands of terrorists, would be a very dangerous weapon. As a "bottom mine," it is very hard to clear. Weighing less than half a ton, it could be transported and planted by a relatively small boat. A fishing boat would be ideal, if you were up to no good.


Article Archive

Surface Forces : Current 2022 2021 2020 2019 2018 2017 2016 2015 2014 2013 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2003 2002 2000 1999 



Help Keep Us Soaring

We need your help! Our subscription base has slowly been dwindling. We need your help in reversing that trend. We would like to add 20 new subscribers this month.

Each month we count on your subscriptions or contributions. You can support us in the following ways:

  1. Make sure you spread the word about us. Two ways to do that are to like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.
  2. Subscribe to our daily newsletter. We’ll send the news to your email box, and you don’t have to come to the site unless you want to read columns or see photos.
  3. You can contribute to the health of StrategyPage. A contribution is not a donation that you can deduct at tax time, but a form of crowdfunding. We store none of your information when you contribute..
Subscribe   Contribute   Close