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For 20 years APOPO’s scent detection rats have been detecting landmines and tuberculosis.
Our story

APOPO addresses global issues through research, development and deployment of scent detection technology at its training and research center in Tanzania and seven other countries.

The highly developed sense of smell and light weight of our African giant pouched rats, nicknamed ‘HeroRATs’, make them ideal detectors of landmines and tuberculosis.

  • 53 HeroRATs detecting landmines
  • 37 HeroRATs detecting tuberculosis
  • 54 HeroRATs in research & development

We work with landmine detection rats

Over 60 countries and states suffer from the blight of hidden landmines. APOPO's landmines detection rats ignore scrap metal and only detect explosive scent, making them much faster at finding landmines than metal detectors.

HeroRATs sniff out the chemical compounds of TNT (explosive) found in landmines and other explosive remnants of war. They ignore scrap metal making them much faster at detecting landmines than metal detectors.

We work with tuberculosis detection rats

Detecting tuberculosis remains one of the biggest challenges facing medical professionals. APOPO’s TB detection rats can check 100 samples for tuberculosis in 20 minutes; the same task would take a lab technician up to 4 days. Suspect samples are re-checked using LED fluorescence microscopy.

The APOPO tuberculosis detection rats check TB samples collected from local clinics. Any they indicate as suspect are reconfirmed by WHO endorsed methods.  Our research program indicates that the rats can increase detection rate of partner clinics by 40%.

We work strategically

It is our mission to develop detection rats technology to provide solutions for global problems and inspire positive social change.

  • Quality - Demonstrating and promoting high standards in research, design, training and implementation of detection rats technology.
  • Innovation - Pioneering creative research and innovative solutions within a participatory learning culture.
  • Social transformation - Developing skills, creating jobs, improving socio-economic and environmental conditions, releasing land for development, and combating public health issues.
  • Diversity - Embracing diversity in all facets of the organization with respect to age, gender, religion, sexual orientation, physical abilities, nationality or ethnicity.

Strategic goals

  • APOPO saves lives through the deployment of detection rats technology:
  • Deploying cost-efficient mine action solutions in affected countries
  • Accelerating TB diagnosis in high TB - burden countries
  • Researching and developing innovative detection rats technology applications
Our expertises
  • Africa | East
  • Africa | South
  • Africa | West
  • Americas | South America
  • Asia | Southeast

Cambodia, Angola, Zimbabwe, Colombia, Tanzania, Mozambique, Ethiopia

Get in touch
Morogoro, Tanzania, Tanzania, Africa
Antwerpen, Belgium, Belgium, Europe
Washington, District of Columbia, United States of America, United States of America, North America
Geneva, Switzerland, Switzerland, Europe

There are currently no vacancies.


Get in contact with us and send an open job application by showing your skills and work experience. Many thanks for your interest!