Effect of forest structure on operational efficiency of a bundle-harvester system in early thinnings

Bergström D, Di Fulvio F, & Nuutinen Y (2016). Effect of forest structure on operational efficiency of a bundle-harvester system in early thinnings. Croatian Journal of Forest Engineering 37 (1): 37-49. DOI:Innovative and effective technology and logistics for forest residual biomass supply in the EU (INFRES, FP7 311881).

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Abstract

The objective of the study was to improve knowledge on effects of harvested tree size and density of undergrowth on the operational efficiency of a bundle-harvester that produces 2.6 m long bundles, with ca. 60–70 cm diameter, in early fuel wood thinnings. In total 26 time study plots were marked out in 30 to 35 year old Scots pine dominated stands with initial density of 2800–9300 trees/ha and stem size range of 15–43 dm3. Ten of the units, randomly chosen, were precleared of undergrowth trees (≤2.5 cm at breast height diameter) prior to harvesting. There were no significant differences between treatments (preclearing vs. no preclearing) in properties or operational efficiency of the harvested and remaining stands. The average height of cut trees and volume of cut stems were 7.4 m and 16.2 dm3, respectively, and on average, 3554 trees/ha were removed. The bundles had a mean fresh mass of 439 kg and the mass was correlated to the proportion of birch trees cut. The productivity was, on average, 3.1 OD t/PM0H (6.6 fresh t/PM0H; 15.1 bundles/PM0H, where PM0H is productive machine hours, without delays) and was modeled with the harvested stem volume (dm3) as a single independent variable. The study provides complementary knowledge to earlier studies of the system’s performance, especially for harvesting stems <30 dm3. Its productivity was limited by the cutting efficiency and could probably be significantly increased by using a felling and bunching head that could cut and accumulate trees during continuous boom movements. Thus, it would be informative to evaluate such a system in various early thinning stand conditions, including assessments of its manoeuvrability in more difficult terrain.

Item Type: Article
Uncontrolled Keywords: Productivity; Scots pine; Bio-energy; Cutting efficiency; Forest structure; Independent variables; Operational efficiencies; Pre-commercial thinning; Productive machine hours; Scots pine
Research Programs: Ecosystems Services and Management (ESM)
Depositing User: Michaela Rossini
Date Deposited: 14 Mar 2016 07:40
Last Modified: 29 Mar 2017 11:39
URI: http://pure.iiasa.ac.at/12299

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