Harvesting small trees for bio-energy
A conventional whole-tree logging operation consisting of 4-wheeled and 3-wheeled saw-head feller-bunchers, two grapple skidders and a chipper that produces dirty chips was monitored across several stands and machine performance evaluated. Stands were inventoried to determine density, volume, and basal area per acre and will be used to relate machine performance to stand characteristics. Costs per hour and per ton will be calculated for each function and a total system cost will be determined for the conventional system. These costs will be used to compare the conventional system to a newly designed system for harvesting trees for bio-energy.