Browsing by Subject "TREE MODELS"

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  • Pyorala, Jiri; Liang, Xinlian; Saarinen, Ninni; Kankare, Ville; Wang, Yunsheng; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppa, Juha; Vastaranta, Mikko (2018)
    Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) accompanied by quantitative tree-modeling algorithms can potentially acquire branching data non-destructively from a forest environment and aid the development and calibration of allometric crown biomass and wood quality equations for species and geographical regions with inadequate models. However, TLS's coverage in capturing individual branches still lacks evaluation. We acquired TLS data from 158 Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) trees and investigated the performance of a quantitative branch detection and modeling approach for extracting key branching parameters, namely the number of branches, branch diameter (b(d)) and branch insertion angle (b) in various crown sections. We used manual point cloud measurements as references. The accuracy of quantitative branch detections decreased significantly above the live crown base height, principally due to the increasing scanner distance as opposed to occlusion effects caused by the foliage. b(d) was generally underestimated, when comparing to the manual reference, while b was estimated accurately: tree-specific biases were 0.89cm and 1.98 degrees, respectively. Our results indicate that full branching structure remains challenging to capture by TLS alone. Nevertheless, the retrievable branching parameters are potential inputs into allometric biomass and wood quality equations.
  • Pyorala, Jiri; Kankare, Ville; Liang, Xinlian; Saarinen, Ninni; Rikala, Juha; Kivinen, Veli-Pekka; Sipi, Marketta; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppa, Juha; Vastaranta, Mikko (2019)
    Wood procurement in sawmills could be improved by resolving detailed three-dimensional stem geometry references from standing timber. This could be achieved, using the increasingly available terrestrial point clouds from various sources. Here, we collected terrestrial laser-scanning (TLS) data from 52 Scots pines (Pinus sylvestris L.) with the purpose of evaluating the accuracy of the log geometry and analysing its relationship with wood quality. For reference, the log-specific top-end diameter, volume, tapering, sweep, basic density and knottiness were measured in a sawmill. We produced stem models from the TLS data and bucked them into logs similar to those measured in the sawmill. In comparison to the sawmill data, the log-specific TLS-based top-end diameter, volume, taper and sweep estimates showed relative mean differences of 1.6, -2.4, -3.0 and 78 per cent, respectively. The correlation coefficients between increasing taper and decreasing wood density and whorl-to-whorl distances were 0.49 and -0.51, respectively. Although the stem-model geometry was resolved from the point clouds with similar accuracy to that at the sawmills, the remaining uncertainty in defining the sweep and linking the wood quality with stem geometry may currently limit the method's feasibilities. Instead of static TLS, mobile platforms would likely be more suitable for operational point cloud data acquisition.
  • Liang, Xinlian; Hyyppä, Juha; Kaartinen, Harri; Lehtomäki, Matti; Pyörälä, Jiri; Pfeifer, Norbert; Holopainen, Markus; Brolly, Gábor; Francesco, Pirotti; Hackenberg, Jan; Huang, Huabing; Jo, Hyun-Woo; Katoh, Masato; Liu, Luxia; Mokroš, Martin; Morel, Jules; Olofsson, Kenneth; Poveda-Lopez, Jose; Trochta, Jan; Wang, Di; Wang, Jinhu; Xi, Zhouxi; Yang, Bisheng; Zheng, Guang; Kankare, Ville; Luoma, Ville; Yu, Xiaowei; Chen, Liang; Vastaranta, Mikko; Saarinen, Ninni; Wang, Yunsheng (2018)
    The last two decades have witnessed increasing awareness of the potential of terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) in forest applications in both public and commercial sectors, along with tremendous research efforts and progress. It is time to inspect the achievements of and the remaining barriers to TLS-based forest investigations, so further research and application are clearly orientated in operational uses of TLS. In such context, the international TLS benchmarking project was launched in 2014 by the European Spatial Data Research Organization and coordinated by the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute. The main objectives of this benchmarking study are to evaluate the potential of applying TLS in characterizing forests, to clarify the strengths and the weaknesses of TLS as a measure of forest digitization, and to reveal the capability of recent algorithms for tree-attribute extraction. The project is designed to benchmark the TLS algorithms by processing identical TLS datasets for a standardized set of forest attribute criteria and by evaluating the results through a common procedure respecting reliable references. Benchmarking results reflect large variances in estimating accuracies, which were unveiled through the 18 compared algorithms and through the evaluation framework, i.e., forest complexity categories, TLS data acquisition approaches, tree attributes and evaluation procedures. The evaluation framework includes three new criteria proposed in this benchmarking and the algorithm performances are investigated through combining two or more criteria (e.g., the accuracy of the individual tree attributes are inspected in conjunction with plot-level completeness) in order to reveal algorithms’ overall performance. The results also reveal some best available forest attribute estimates at this time, which clarify the status quo of TLS-based forest investigations. Some results are well expected, while some are new, e.g., the variances of estimating accuracies between single-/multi-scan, the principle of the algorithm designs and the possibility of a computer outperforming human operation. With single-scan data, i.e., one hemispherical scan per plot, most of the recent algorithms are capable of achieving stem detection with approximately 75% completeness and 90% correctness in the easy forest stands (easy plots: 600 stems/ha, 20 cm mean DBH). The detection rate decreases when the stem density increases and the average DBH decreases, i.e., 60% completeness with 90% correctness (medium plots: 1000 stem/ha, 15 cm mean DBH) and 30% completeness with 90% correctness (difficult plots: 2000 stems/ha, 10 cm mean DBH). The application of the multi-scan approach, i.e., five scans per plot at the center and four quadrant angles, is more effective in complex stands, increasing the completeness to approximately 90% for medium plots and to approximately 70% for difficult plots, with almost 100% correctness. The results of this benchmarking also show that the TLS-based approaches can provide the estimates of the DBH and the stem curve at a 1–2 cm accuracy that are close to what is required in practical applications, e.g., national forest inventories (NFIs). In terms of algorithm development, a high level of automation is a commonly shared standard, but a bottleneck occurs at stem detection and tree height estimation, especially in multilayer and dense forest stands. The greatest challenge is that even with the multi-scan approach, it is still hard to completely and accurately record stems of all trees in a plot due to the occlusion effects of the trees and bushes in forests. Future development must address the redundant yet incomplete point clouds of forest sample plots and recognize trees more accurately and efficiently. It is worth noting that TLS currently provides the best quality terrestrial point clouds in comparison with all other technologies, meaning that all the benchmarks labeled in this paper can also serve as a reference for other terrestrial point clouds sources.
  • Yrttimaa, Tuomas; Saarinen, Ninni; Kankare, Ville; Hynynen, Jari; Huuskonen, Saija; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppä, Juha; Vastaranta, Mikko (2020)
    There is a limited understanding of how forest structure affects the performance of methods based on terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) in characterizing trees and forest environments. We aim to improve this understanding by studying how different forest management activities that shape tree size distributions affect the TLS-based forest characterization accuracy in managed Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) stands. For that purpose, we investigated 27 sample plots consisting of three different thinning types, two thinning intensities as well as control plots without any treatments. Multi-scan TLS point clouds were collected from the sample plots, and a point cloud processing algorithm was used to segment individual trees and classify the segmented point clouds into stem and crown points. The classified point clouds were further used to estimate tree and forest structural attributes. With the TLS-based forest characterization, almost 100% completeness in tree detection, 0.7 cm (3.4%) root-mean-square- error (RMSE) in diameter-at-breast-height measurements, 0.9–1.4 m (4.5–7.3%) RMSE in tree height measure-ments, and <6% relative RMSE in the estimates of forest structural attributes (i.e. mean basal area, number of trees per hectare, mean volume, basal area-weighted mean diameter and height) were obtained depending on the applied thinning type. Thinnings decreased variation in horizontal and vertical forest structure, which especially favoured the TLS-based tree detection and tree height measurements, enabling reliable estimates for forest structural attributes. A considerably lower performance was recorded for the control plots. Thinning intensity was noticed to affect more on the accuracy of TLS-based forest characterization than thinning type. The number of trees per hectare and the proportion of suppressed trees were recognized as the main factors affecting the accuracy of TLS-based forest characterization. The more variation there was in the tree size distribution, the more challenging it was for the TLS-based method to capture all the trees and derive the tree and forest structural attributes. In general, consistent accuracy and reliability in the estimates of tree and forest attributes can be expected when using TLS for characterizing managed boreal forests.
  • Pyörälä, Jiri; Liang, Xinlian; Vastaranta, Mikko; Saarinen, Ninni; Kankare, Ville; Wang, Yunsheng; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppä, Juha (2018)
    State-of-the-art technology available at sawmills enables measurements of whorl numbers and the maximum branch diameter for individual logs, but such information is currently unavailable at the wood procurement planning phase. The first step toward more detailed evaluation of standing timber is to introduce a method that produces similar wood quality indicators in standing forests as those currently used in sawmills. Our aim was to develop a quantitative method to detect and model branches from terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) point clouds data of trees in a forest environment. The test data were obtained from 158 Scots pines (Pinus sylvestris L.) in six mature forest stands. The method was evaluated for the accuracy of the following branch parameters: Number of whorls per tree and for every whorl, the maximum branch diameter and the branch insertion angle associated with it. The analysis concentrated on log-sections (stem diameter > 15 cm) where the branches most affect wood's value added. The quantitative whorl detection method had an accuracy of 69.9% and a 1.9% false positive rate. The estimates of the maximum branch diameters and the corresponding insertion angles for each whorl were underestimated by 0.34 cm (11.1%) and 0.67 degrees (1.0%), with a root-mean-squared error of 1.42 cm (46.0%) and 17.2 degrees (26.3%), respectively. Distance from the scanner, occlusion, and wind were the main external factors that affect the method's functionality. Thus, the completeness and point density of the data should be addressed when applying TLS point cloud based tree models to assess branch parameters.