Bruce Talbot

Research Professor

(+47) 948 86 791

Ås H8

Visiting address
Høgskoleveien 8, 1433 Ås


In the coastal region of Norway, large volumes of relatively inaccessible plantation timber are maturing for harvest. The economic feasibility of accessing much of this timber has limited the level of harvesting activity considerably. Harvesting planners are faced with the classic dilemma of finding the appropriate level of investment in infrastructure, as against inoptimal transportation. In this paper, we present results from a simple deterministic simulation carried out to illustrate the efficiency frontiers of three transport methods, one of which requires a substantial investment in road upgrading. Results depend on assumptions made, but clearly show that in these conditions, upgrading roads for truck+trailer transport should be evaluated on a cases by case basis. Forest road length and condition, public road distance to conversion site, and investment level all play important roles in the decision structure. In the coastal regions, road upgrades would generally need to be justified by benefits other than timber harvesting alone.


Large volumes of spruce-dominated forests established on steep terrain are maturing in western Norway. The level of harvesting needed in utilising these forests calls for investments in cable yarding, processing and transport systems, and updated knowledge on the appropriate technology for Norwegian conditions. In the yarding-processing-truck transport operation, the processor cannot operate if the cable yarding system does not supply trees at a sufficient rate or when the buffer storage becomes full. As a result, the productivity of the whole system is often substantially lower than those of the individual parts in the system. Discrete-event simulation has been applied successfully in the analysis of a wide variety of wood harvesting and transport systems, where the productivities of different parts in the supply chain are interlinked .....


This paper builds on findings from the recently finalised work package 3.9 of the EU Indisputable Key project. Three institutes cooperated in developing intricate models spanning from the standing tree to the dispatch yard of a Swedish window manufacturer. Numerous timber properties were assigned to RFID tags, applied to the log at felling by a specially adapted harvester head. Logs were allocated to each of seven sawmills according to their timber properties using an LP based optimisation procedure. Simulation was then used to compare the fate of traced timber throughout the production lines of one of the sawmills and its downstream manufacturers.....