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Sensors 2013, 13(3), 3394-3408; doi:10.3390/s130303394
Article

Using a Standing-Tree Acoustic Tool to Identify Forest Stands for the Production of Mechanically-Graded Lumber

1
,
1
,
2
 and
1,*
1 Centre de recherche sur le bois, Université Laval, 2425 rue de la Terrasse, Québec, QC G1V 0A6, Canada 2 Fibre-Gen, Unit 5 Amuri Park, 404 Barbadoes Street, Christchurch 8013, New Zealand
* Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 25 January 2013 / Revised: 22 February 2013 / Accepted: 7 March 2013 / Published: 12 March 2013
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sensor-Based Technologies and Processes in Agriculture and Forestry)
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Abstract

This study investigates how the use of a Hitman ST300 acoustic sensor can help identify the best forest stands to be used as supply sources for the production of Machine Stress-Rated (MSR) lumber. Using two piezoelectric sensors, the ST300 measures the velocity of a mechanical wave induced in a standing tree. Measurements were made on 333 black spruce (Picea mariana (Mill.) BSP) trees from the North Shore region, Quebec (Canada) selected across a range of locations and along a chronosequence of elapsed time since the last fire (TSF). Logs were cut from a subsample of 39 trees, and sawn into 77 pieces of 38 mm × 89 mm cross-section before undergoing mechanical testing according to ASTM standard D-4761. A linear regression model was developed to predict the static modulus of elasticity of lumber using tree acoustic velocity and stem diameter at 1.3 m above ground level (R2 = 0.41). Results suggest that, at a regional level, 92% of the black spruce trees meet the requirements of MSR grade 1650Fb-1.5E, whilst 64% and 34% meet the 2100Fb-1.8E and 2400Fb-2.0E, respectively. Mature stands with a TSF < 150 years had 11 and 18% more boards in the latter two categories, respectively, and therefore represented the best supply source for MSR lumber.
Keywords: acoustic sensors; forestry wood chain; wood stiffness; machine stress-rated lumber acoustic sensors; forestry wood chain; wood stiffness; machine stress-rated lumber
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Paradis, N.; Auty, D.; Carter, P.; Achim, A. Using a Standing-Tree Acoustic Tool to Identify Forest Stands for the Production of Mechanically-Graded Lumber. Sensors 2013, 13, 3394-3408.

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