Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

A new model to simulate forest growth

14.11.2007
The Algorithm Engineering Group at the UPM’s School of Computing has developed, in conjunction with a forestry engineer from the University of Córdoba, a simulator modelling the evolution of a forest. This tool, called Vorest, is a forestry engineering research aid and an excellent example of how to apply computational geometry to real-world problems.

Tree development within a forest largely depends on how much space they have both on the ground and in the air, around the treetops. Trees compete to dominate the space they need to develop, and this relates these biological systems directly to Voronoi diagrams. A Voronoi diagram can be seen as the space partition as a result of expanding the sites in the diagram.

Vorest users can examine what impact the space the trees take up has on the development of a forest. This includes the space transfer dynamics between neighbouring trees dictated by their life strategies, and the outcome in terms of tree growth and mortality. Vorest’s simulation process is based on the fact that any tree is surrounded by an influence region of variable size that determines the future growth of the individual tree.

User flexibility

Vorest automatically calculates the influence regions, but offers users a wide range of options for deciding how growth should be simulated depending on this region. The application outputs two key classes of visual information.

First, Vorest represents the Voronoi diagram modelling the influence regions of each of the trees loaded in the program at any point of their growth. Second, it generates a more or less detailed representation of what the trees could really be expected to look like in their natural environment. The application then is able to generate a detailed 3D scene of what the forest really looks like.

Users will be able to manipulate this scene using textures to improve soil appearance or even by configuring the SkyBox representation. This produces a basic, but effective 3D background effect. The application has a straightforward and easy-to-use interface, and users have no need of computing expertise to operate the system.

The model was developed by Manuel Abellanas and Carlos Vilas from the Department of Applied Mathematics at the Universidad Politécnica de Madrid’s School of Computing and by Begoña Abellanas from the Department of Forestry Engineering at the Universidad de Córdoba. They were advised by Professor Oscar García from Canada’s Northern British Columbia University, who was a visiting professor at the Department of Applied Mathematics this year.

Useful models

Forest simulation models or forest growth models are very useful for forest managers and forestry researchers in many respects. A forest growth model aims to describe the dynamics of the forest closely and precisely enough to meet the needs of the forester or forestry researcher.

Dynamics includes all the change processes throughout the forest’s or tree’s lifetime. The primary changes in the forestry field are related to the incorporation, growth and death of trees, a forest’s key asset. There are many forest growth models. Vorest models the individual tree.

The most common uses of these models for managers are to forecast timber production or, less often, other forestry products (cones, cork, etc.) and to simulate different forestry management alternatives with a view to decision making. The models help to forecast what long-term effects a forestry management intervention is likely to have on both timber production and the future conditions of the actual forest, as well as the impact of interventions on other forest values.

For forestry researchers, models are most useful as tools for researching forest dynamics. A forest growth model like Vorest describes the dynamics of the forest closely and precisely enough to meet the needs of forestry managers or forestry researchers.

Eduardo Martínez | alfa
Further information:
http://www.fi.upm.es/?pagina=536

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Intelligent Deletion of Superfluous Digital Files
21.02.2020 | Otto-Friedrich-Universität Bamberg

nachricht High-Performance Computing Center of the University of Stuttgart Receives new Supercomuter "Hawk"
19.02.2020 | Universität Stuttgart

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: A step towards controlling spin-dependent petahertz electronics by material defects

The operational speed of semiconductors in various electronic and optoelectronic devices is limited to several gigahertz (a billion oscillations per second). This constrains the upper limit of the operational speed of computing. Now researchers from the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter in Hamburg, Germany, and the Indian Institute of Technology in Bombay have explained how these processes can be sped up through the use of light waves and defected solid materials.

Light waves perform several hundred trillion oscillations per second. Hence, it is natural to envision employing light oscillations to drive the electronic...

Im Focus: Freiburg researcher investigate the origins of surface texture

Most natural and artificial surfaces are rough: metals and even glasses that appear smooth to the naked eye can look like jagged mountain ranges under the microscope. There is currently no uniform theory about the origin of this roughness despite it being observed on all scales, from the atomic to the tectonic. Scientists suspect that the rough surface is formed by irreversible plastic deformation that occurs in many processes of mechanical machining of components such as milling.

Prof. Dr. Lars Pastewka from the Simulation group at the Department of Microsystems Engineering at the University of Freiburg and his team have simulated such...

Im Focus: Skyrmions like it hot: Spin structures are controllable even at high temperatures

Investigation of the temperature dependence of the skyrmion Hall effect reveals further insights into possible new data storage devices

The joint research project of Johannes Gutenberg University Mainz (JGU) and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) that had previously demonstrated...

Im Focus: Making the internet more energy efficient through systemic optimization

Researchers at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden, recently completed a 5-year research project looking at how to make fibre optic communications systems more energy efficient. Among their proposals are smart, error-correcting data chip circuits, which they refined to be 10 times less energy consumptive. The project has yielded several scientific articles, in publications including Nature Communications.

Streaming films and music, scrolling through social media, and using cloud-based storage services are everyday activities now.

Im Focus: New synthesis methods enhance 3D chemical space for drug discovery

After helping develop a new approach for organic synthesis -- carbon-hydrogen functionalization -- scientists at Emory University are now showing how this approach may apply to drug discovery. Nature Catalysis published their most recent work -- a streamlined process for making a three-dimensional scaffold of keen interest to the pharmaceutical industry.

"Our tools open up whole new chemical space for potential drug targets," says Huw Davies, Emory professor of organic chemistry and senior author of the paper.

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

VideoLinks
Industry & Economy
Event News

70th Lindau Nobel Laureate Meeting: Around 70 Laureates set to meet with young scientists from approx. 100 countries

12.02.2020 | Event News

11th Advanced Battery Power Conference, March 24-25, 2020 in Münster/Germany

16.01.2020 | Event News

Laser Colloquium Hydrogen LKH2: fast and reliable fuel cell manufacturing

15.01.2020 | Event News

 
Latest News

Active droplets

21.02.2020 | Medical Engineering

Finding new clues to brain cancer treatment

21.02.2020 | Health and Medicine

Beyond the brim, Sombrero Galaxy's halo suggests turbulent past

21.02.2020 | Physics and Astronomy

VideoLinks
Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>