SINTEF is using mathematical methods and raw computing power to plan optimum logging strategies.
SINTEF has been cooperating for several years with NORSKOG and several other Norwegian institutions involved in forestry in the development of software that will offer the best possible solutions to forestry planning problems. The Ecoplan software package is a result of these efforts.
Ecoplan is now about to be evaluated as part of a project which is being partly financed by the Research Council of Norway. SINTEF and Norskog are also in contact with a Canadian company that is looking at potential North American markets for Ecoplan.
Planning logging operations is a complex process – we cannot just go and chop down a few trees now and again; the area designated for logging must not be too great, species diversity has to be preserved, a stand of trees cannot be cut down before the neighbouring stand has reached a certain height, and the plan also needs to offer optimal economic results.