Browsing by Subject "Terrestrial laser scanning"

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  • Saarinen, Ninni; Kankare, Ville; Yrttimaa, Tuomas; Viljanen, Niko; Honkavaara, Eija; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppä, Juha; Huuskonen, Saija; Hynynen, Jari; Vastaranta, Mikko (2020)
    Forest management alters the growing conditions and thus further development of trees. However, quantitative assessment of forest management on tree growth has been demanding as methodologies for capturing changes comprehensively in space and time have been lacking. Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) has shown to be capable of providing three-dimensional (3D) tree stem reconstructions required for revealing differences between stem shapes and sizes. In this study, we used 3D reconstructions of tree stems from TLS and an unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) to investigate how varying thinning treatments and the following growth effects affected stem shape and size of Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris L.) trees. The results showed that intensive thinning resulted in more stem volume and therefore total biomass allocation and carbon uptake compared to the moderate thinning.Relationship between tree height and diameter at breast height (i.e. slenderness) varied between both thinning intensity and type (i.e. from below and above) indicating differing response to thinning and allocation of stem growth of Scots pine trees. Furthermore, intensive thinning, especially from below, produced less variation in relative stem attributes characterizing stem shape and size. Thus, it can be concluded that thinning intensity,type, and the following growth effects have an impact on post-thinning stem shape and size of Scots pine trees.Our study presented detailed measurements on post-thinning stem growth of Scots pines that have been laborious or impracticable before the emergence of detailed 3D technologies. Moreover, the stem reconstructions from TLS and UAV provided variety of attributes characterizing stem shape and size that have not traditionally been feasible to obtain. The study demonstrated that detailed 3D technologies, such as TLS and UAV, provide information that can be used to generate new knowledge for supporting forest management and silviculture as well as improving ecological understanding of boreal forests.1
  • Liu, Jingbin; Liang, Xinlian; Hyyppä, Juha; Yu, Xiaowei; Lehtomäki, Matti; Pyörälä, Jiri; Zhu, Lingli; Wang, Yunsheng; Chen, Ruizhi (2017)
    Terrestrial laser scanning has been widely used to analyze the 3D structure of a forest in detail and to generate data at the level of a reference plot for forest inventories without destructive measurements. Multi-scan terrestrial laser scanning is more commonly applied to collect plot-level data so that all of the stems can be detected and analyzed. However, it is necessary to match the point clouds of multiple scans to yield a point cloud with automated processing. Mismatches between datasets will lead to errors during the processing of multi-scan data. Classic registration methods based on flat surfaces cannot be directly applied in forest environments; therefore, artificial reference objects have conventionally been used to assist with scan matching. The use of artificial references requires additional labor and expertise, as well as greatly increasing the cost. In this study, we present an automated processing method for plot-level stem mapping that matches multiple scans without artificial references. In contrast to previous studies, the registration method developed in this study exploits the natural geometric characteristics among a set of tree stems in a plot and combines the point clouds of multiple scans into a unified coordinate system. Integrating multiple scans improves the overall performance of stem mapping in terms of the correctness of tree detection, as well as the bias and the root-mean-square errors of forest attributes such as diameter at breast height and tree height. In addition, the automated processing method makes stem mapping more reliable and consistent among plots, reduces the costs associated with plot-based stem mapping, and enhances the efficiency. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V.
  • Tanhuanpää, Topi; Yu, Xiaowei; Luoma, Ville; Saarinen, Ninni; Raisio, Juha; Hyyppä, Juha; Kumpula, Timo; Holopainen, Markus (2019)
    Urban forests consist of patches of recreational areas, parks, and single trees on roadsides and other forested urban areas. Large number of tree species and heterogeneous growing conditions result in diverse canopy structure. High variation can be found both at level of single tree crowns and in canopy characteristics of larger areas. As urban forests are typically managed with small-scale, even tree-level operations, there is a need for detailed forest information. In this study, the effect of varying canopy conditions was tested on nine individual tree detection (ITD) methods. All methods utilized airborne laser scanning (ALS)-derived canopy height models (CHM) and different modifications of watershed segmentation (WS). The performance of mapping methods was compared in three strata with varying mean height and canopy cover. The results showed considerable variation between the methods when tested in varying canopy conditions. Especially, presence of large broadleaved trees affected the accuracy of detecting individual trees. The best performing methods for the three strata were G0.7, F2 and Gadapt. The areas with low canopy cover turned out problematic for all ITD methods tested as co-occurrence of small trees and large deciduous trees affected the accuracy significantly. Overall, The results show that stratification can be used to enhance the quality of ITD in urban park areas. However, heterogeneous canopy structure and varying growth patterns typical for urban parks lower the accuracy of tree detection. Also, according to our results we suggest that canopy height and canopy cover alone are insufficient attributes for stratifying urban canopy conditions.
  • 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.
  • Wang, Yunsheng; Lehtomäki, Matti; Liang, Xinlian; Pyörälä, Jiri Kristian; Kukko, Antero; Jaakkola, Anttoni; Liu, Jingbin; Feng, Ziyi; Chen, Ruizhi; Hyyppä, Juha (2019)
    Quantitative comparisons of tree height observations from different sources are scarce due to the difficulties in effective sampling. In this study, the reliability and robustness of tree height observations obtained via a conventional field inventory, airborne laser scanning (ALS) and terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) were investigated. A carefully designed non-destructive experiment was conducted that included 1174 individual trees in 18 sample plots (32 m x 32 m) in a Scandinavian boreal forest. The point density of the ALS data was approximately 450 points/m(2). The TLS data were acquired with multi-scans from the center and the four quadrant directions of the sample plots. Both the ALS and TLS data represented the cutting edge point cloud products. Tree heights were manually measured from the ALS and TLS point clouds with the aid of existing tree maps. Therefore, the evaluation results revealed the capacities of the applied laser scanning (LS) data while excluding the influence of data processing approach such as the individual tree detection. The reliability and robustness of different tree height sources were evaluated through a cross-comparison of the ALS-, TLS-, and field- based tree heights. Compared to ALS and TLS, field measurements were more sensitive to stand complexity, crown classes, and species. Overall, field measurements tend to overestimate height of tall trees, especially tall trees in codominant crown class. In dense stands, high uncertainties also exist in the field measured heights for small trees in intermediate and suppressed crown class. The ALS-based tree height estimates were robust across all stand conditions. The taller the tree, the more reliable was the ALS-based tree height. The highest uncertainty in ALS-based tree heights came from trees in intermediate crown class, due to the difficulty of identifying treetops. When using TLS, reliable tree heights can be expected for trees lower than 15-20 m in height, depending on the complexity of forest stands. The advantage of LS systems was the robustness of the geometric accuracy of the data. The greatest challenges of the LS techniques in measuring individual tree heights lie in the occlusion effects, which lead to omissions of trees in intermediate and suppressed crown classes in ALS data and incomplete crowns of tall trees in TLS data.
  • Calders, Kim; Adams, Jennifer; Armston, John; Bartholomeus, Harm; Bauwens, Sebastien; Bentley, Lisa Patrick; Chave, Jerome; Danson, F. Mark; Demol, Miro; Disney, Mathias; Gaulton, Rachel; Moorthy, Sruthi M. Krishna; Levick, Shaun R.; Saarinen, Ninni; Schaaf, Crystal; Stovall, Atticus; Terryn, Louise; Wilkes, Phil; Verbeeck, Hans (2020)
    Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) was introduced for basic forest measurements, such as tree height and diameter, in the early 2000s. Recent advances in sensor and algorithm development have allowed us to assess in situ 3D forest structure explicitly and revolutionised the way we monitor and quantify ecosystem structure and function. Here, we provide an interdisciplinary focus to explore current developments in TLS to measure and monitor forest structure. We argue that TLS data will play a critical role in understanding fundamental ecological questions about tree size and shape, allometric scaling, metabolic function and plasticity of form. Furthermore, these new developments enable new applications such as radiative transfer modelling with realistic virtual forests, monitoring of urban forests and larger scale ecosystem monitoring through long-range scanning. Finally, we discuss upscaling of TLS data through data fusion with unmanned aerial vehicles, airborne and spaceborne data, as well as the essential role of TLS in validation of spaceborne missions that monitor ecosystem structure.
  • Liang, Xinlian; Kankare, Ville; Hyyppä, Juha; Wang, Yunsheng; Kukko, Antero; Haggren, Henrik; Yu, Xiaowei; Kaartinen, Harri; Jaakkola, Anttoni; Guan, Fengying; Holopainen, Markus; Vastaranta, Mikko (2016)
    Decision making on forest resources relies on the precise information that is collected using inventory. There are many different kinds of forest inventory techniques that can be applied depending on the goal, scale, resources and the required accuracy. Most of the forest inventories are based on field sample. Therefore, the accuracy of the forest inventories depends on the quality and quantity of the field sample. Conventionally, field sample has been measured using simple tools. When map is required, remote sensing materials are needed. Terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) provides a measurement technique that can acquire millimeter-level of detail from the surrounding area, which allows rapid, automatic and periodical estimates of many important forest inventory attributes. It is expected that TLS will be operationally used in forest inventories as soon as the appropriate software becomes available, best practices become known and general knowledge of these findings becomes more wide spread. Meanwhile, mobile laser scanning, personal laser scanning, and image-based point clouds became capable of capturing similar terrestrial point cloud data as TLS. This paper reviews the advances of applying TLS in forest inventories, discusses its properties with reference to other related techniques and discusses the future prospects of this technique. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier B.V. on behalf of International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, Inc. (ISPRS). This is an open access article under the CC BY-NC-ND license (
  • Junttila, Samuli; Hölttä, Teemu; Puttonen, Eetu Severi; Katoh, Masato; Vastaranta, Mikko; Kaartinen, H.; Holopainen, Markus; Hyyppä, Hannu (2021)
    During the past decades, extreme events have become more prevalent and last longer, and as a result drought-induced plant mortality has increased globally. Timely information on plant water dynamics is essential for understanding and anticipating drought-induced plant mortality. Leaf water potential (Psi(L)), which is usually measured destructively, is the most common metric that has been used for decades for measuring water stress. Remote sensing methods have been developed to obtain information on water dynamics from trees and forested landscapes. However, the spatial and temporal resolutions of the existing methods have limited our understanding of the water dynamics and diurnal variation of Psi(L) within single trees. Thus, we investigated the capability of terrestrial laser scanning (TLS) intensity in observing diurnal variation in Psi(L) during a 50-h monitoring period. We aimed to improve the understanding on how large a part of the diurnal variation in Psi(L) can be captured using TLS intensity observations. We found that TLS intensity at the 905 nm wavelength measured from a static position was able to explain 77% of the variation in Psi(L) for three trees of two tree species with a root mean square error of 0.141 MPa. Based on our experiment with three trees, a time series of TLS intensity measurements can be used in detecting changes in Psi(L), and thus it is worthwhile to expand the investigations to cover a wider range of tree species and forests and further increase our understanding of plant water dynamics at wider spatial and temporal scales.
  • Junttila, S.; Holopainen, M.; Vastaranta, M.; Lyytikäinen-Saarenmaa, P.; Kaartinen, H.; Hyyppä, J.; Hyyppä, H. (2019)
    Climate change is causing novel forest stress around the world due to changes in environmental conditions. Forest pest insects, such as Ips typographus (L.), are spreading toward the northern latitudes and are now able to produce more generations in their current range; this has increased forest disturbances. Timely information on tree decline is critical in allowing forest managers to plan effective countermeasures and to forecast potential infestation areas. Field-based infestation surveys of bark beetles have traditionally involved visual estimates of entrance holes, resin flow, and maternal-gallery densities; such estimates are prone to error and bias. Thus, objective and automated methods for estimating tree infestation status are required. In this study, we investigated the feasibility of dual-wavelength terrestrial lidar in the estimation and detection of I. typographus infestation symptoms. In addition, we examined the relationship between leaf water content (measured as gravimetric water content and equivalent water thickness) and infestation severity. Using two terrestrial lidar systems (operating at 905 nm and 1550 nm), we measured 29 mature Norway spruce (Picea abies [L.] Karst.) trees that exhibited low or moderate infestation symptoms. We calculated single and dual-wavelength lidar intensity metrics from stem and crown points to test these metrics' ability to discriminate I. typographus infestation levels using regressions and linear discriminant analyses. Across the various I. typographus infestation levels, we found significant differences (p