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MAIC: Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide

by Martin Peterson, MAIC

The Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide on the James Madison University Mine Action Information Center (JMU MAIC) website ( provides information gathered from UXO research about how to "...facilitate international unexploded ordnance (UXO) awareness and identification."1 The Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide is sponsored by the Office of the Secretary of Defense: Special Operations and Low Intensity Conflict (SO/LIC), funded by the Defense Security Cooperation Agency (DSCA), and prepared by Naval Explosive Ordnance Disposal Technology Division (NAVEODTECHDIV). The guide is provided by the JMU MAIC.

The Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide provides approximately 1200 pictures and descriptions of different items of UXO, which can be downloaded in both high- and low-resolution formats. Additionally, the guide states the reasoning behind providing both high- and low-resolution downloadable formats of the Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide: "The high-resolution version contains images at 300 dpi and is optimized for printing high-quality along with clear, crisp images. The low-resolution version contains images at a much lower quality of 100 dpi and is targeted for bandwidth-constrained environments. If you have a fast connection, download the high-resolution files."1

The guide is categorized by major UXO categories, with each section classifying and providing descriptions of specific UXO. The Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide provides detailed information on the following:

  • Bombs
  • Dispensers, clusters and launchers
  • Projectiles
  • Fuzes/firing devices
  • Grenades
  • Rockets
  • Guided missiles
  • Landmines
  • Pyrotechnics
  • Miscellaneous explosive devices
  • Naval mines
  • Depth charges/underwater UXO
  • Scatterables
  • Weapon systems

Because of the nature of the information presented and the dangers associated with demining, the Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide should not be used as a resource for Explosive Ordnance Disposal (EOD) technicians, but rather as a tool to aid in the identification of UXO. This information is primarily meant to act as a guide for personnel classifying UXO when not in the immediate presence of a professional EOD technician.

It is important to restate that demining is dangerous and that the information contained within the Iraq Ordnance Identification Guide should be used only as a tool for professionals in the field to learn more about specific items of UXO and mine action. While this information is meant to be viewed at the discretion of the casual mine action researcher, it does offer a vast assortment of interesting pictures and classifications outlining the specifics of different individual items of UXO.

*All pictures courtesy of the MAIC.


  1. JMU Mine Action Information Center (MAIC). "MAIC: Iraq OIG." JMU Mine Action Information Center. March 2, 2004. James Madison University. March 4, 2004.

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