Environmental monitoring for the delaboration of munitions on the seabed (UDEMM)

**UDEMM was successfully completed in August 2019**

In 2011, experts estimated that approximately 300,000 metric tons of dumped conventional munitions are resting on the seabed of the German part of the Baltic Sea. Another 1.3 million metric tons of munitions is belived to be deposited in the German part of the Noth Sea, However, the environental hazards do not stop at national borders, since also Polish, Danish and Dutch waters are affected by a potential release of dangerous chemicals from the rotting ammunition into the water column.

Thus, detecting and delaborating this dangerous legacy from past generations is an enormous challenge for politicians, authorities, historians and marine scientists on a European scale. International projects, funded by the European Commision and NATO also contribute to assessing the potential risks and developing a systematic method to decontaminate munition dumping sites.

Photo credit: Jana Ulrich

In the framework of the UDEMM project, scientists of different partner institutions investigate four relevant aspects concerning the effects of underwater munitions. This project is conducted in close collaboration with the Projektträger Jülich (PtJ) and the technology project RoBEMM ("Robotic underwater salvage and disposal process with the technology to remove explosive ordnance in the sea, in particular in coastal and shallow waters")  to achieve the best possible result to develop a both economically viable and autonomous (without divers) as well as environmental friendly (without detonating) method to in-situ (underwater) delaborate potentially dangerous mines and other explosives.

Funding of approximately 1.6 million € for the UDEMM project is provided by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF) within the special program "Research for Sustainable Development (FONA)".

Please be invited to read more about

As the German Federal State struggling most with the consequences of sea dumped munitions, the state government of Schleswig-Holstein provides general information on this topic on behalf of the German Program on Underwater Munitions: www.underwatermunitions.de.


UDEMM wurde im August 2019 erfolgreich abgeschlossen

Der Best Practice-Leitfaden kann hier heruntergeladen werden. Bitte besuchen Sie auch unseren Abschnitt über Forschungsergebnisse.

Forschungsrundfahrt mit FS POSEIDON

Zweck der Reise ist eine groß angelegte Bestandsaufnahme der
Deutsche Ostsee im Hinblick auf versenkte Munition aus dem Zweiten Weltkrieg.
Beginn der Untersuchungen ist in Kiel. Während der 3-wöchigen Fahrt werden
verschiedene Gebiete in deutschen Küstengewässern kartiert
und beprobt.

Foto: N. Augustin, GEOMAR

INTERNATIONAL SYMPOSIUM for  sea-dumped munition and UXO

Munition in the sea is a global problem for marine economy and has an unknown environmental impact.

From May 2nd to 4th, 2018 an interdisciplinary symposium in Berlin (Germany) shall give a platform to all kinds of expertises from science, industry, military and politics to discuss methods and results from ongoing projects. It will be hosted by Schleswig-Holstein's Representation to the Federal Government and will be open for the public on May 3rd, 17:30 hrs.



03/06/2019: Das Erste shows the report "Die Story im Ersten: Bomben im Meer"

07/02/2019: NTV publishes the article "Versenkte Kampfstoffe - Forscher warnen vor rostender Munition im Meer"

17/10/2018: Helmholtz reports on "Das Erbe der Kriege"

05/16/2017: The SHZ publishes two articles reporting also on the UDEMM symposium (05/15/2017 & 05/16/2017)

05/15/2017: The NDR reports on the UDEMM symposium in Warnemünde (Video available)

05/12/2017: The KN reports on the progress of the UDEMM research project

04/10/2017: The Federal Ministry of Energy, Agriculture, the Environment and Rural Areas (MELUR) of Schleswig-Holstein publishes the fifth research report on ammunition in the German North and Baltic Sea waters (German only).

04/10/2017: The results of this report are also taken on by the press (Ostsee-Zeitung) and the radio (NDR) - (German only).

10/15/2016: The Berliner Zeitung publishes an article about the joined UDEMM / ROBEMM project and the efforts to delaborate old submarine mines and ordnances (German only).

06/30/2016: The NDR-Welle Nord attends a cruise with the research barge "Polarfuchs".

Please follow this link to learn more.

04/05/2016: The "Norddeutsche Rundfunk (NDR)", the SHZ and the "Kieler Nachrichten (KN)" report on the successful commencement of the work within the UDEMM project, its purpose and measures.

10/08/2015: The "Kieler Nachrichten (KN)" publishes an article about the efforts of the joined ROBEMM / UDEMM project to successfully develop an automated method to delaborate underwater mines and ordnances.

Project number:
03F0747A, B, C


03/2016 - 02/2019