Timber Species Identifier

Use TSI to accurately identify timber species from LiDAR data

Object Raku Technology's Timber Species Identifier (TSI) is a system of automated software components that analyzes LiDAR data to determine the location and species of individual trees. TSI is the result of a collaborative effort between Object Raku and key forestry partners and leverages Object Raku's experience in feature extraction and remote sensing analysis. TSI allows forestors to leverage their LiDAR investment and extract the maximum return and operational benefit.

TSI is a system designed to readily incorporate any tree species. The TSI code was written to enable an almost limitless species catalog. Current species successfully identified by TSI include douglas fir, western red cedar, western hemlock, amabilis fir (balsam), yellow cedar (cypress), red alder, big leaf maple, sitka spruce, and lodgepole pine.

TSI begins by segmenting the forest canopy into individual trees. For a given point cloud area, the segmentation process produces an area shapefile for each tree including a height attribute.

Above: In order to analyze each tree, TSI must first segment the timber stand into individual trees. This is an automated process.

Can TSI use our existing LiDAR or does it require a new LiDAR collection?
TSI was developed to be able to use existing LiDAR data whenever possible. Subject to certain minimum point densities, your present data may be used.

Above: TSI validation test results on 19 harvest blocks with a volume just over 300,000 cubic meters.

How accurate is TSI?
TSI has been tested and validated against 6 million cubic meters of timber. Accuracy is measured to within 10% of available cruise and scale information and is 84% for second growth (328 harvested blocks) and 72% for old growth (209 harvested blocks)

Is TSI available as a stand-alone software or is it a service?
Both. The main identification capability requires a very deep understanding of the TSI processes and tools and so may be more economical as a service, thereby avoiding the license costs and training requirement. The TSI analysis module, called the Block Design Tool, is built on the ESRI ArcGIS engine and allows the forester to outline proposed harvest areas and determine potential profitability based on harvest cost and revenue parameters.

BDT is offered as an add-on to the Timber Species Identifier (TSI) and takes full advantage of the tailor-made (TSI) data formats.

Revenue figures are species-specific and based on optimized product formulas. Product types can be changed to suit each company. Harvest method costs are slope-based and depicted in $/m3 of volume to be harvested. Road and crossing costs are determined by length of feature and the amount of the side-slope in the proposed path.

Enabled by the inclusion of the TSI species data, BDT is uniquely positioned to provide the forester a timely projection of a block's possible profitability

What species can TSI identify?
TSI has successfully identified douglas fir, western red cedar, western hemlock, amabilis fir (balsam), yellow cedar (cypress), red alder, big leaf maple, sitka spruce, and lodgepole pine. Each new LiDAR data set requires some adjustment to the TSI algorithms. As a result, analysis of species already completed in a previous project may still require additional ground truth collection and calibration.

Above: TSI performs a discrete analysis of each tree in a target area. Once segmented, each tree's .las data is analyzed in the context of 3 primary characteristics: Density, Reflectivity, and Geometry. The algorithms factor in all available attribute information for every point in each tree. Following analysis, each tree is assigned a species from the species catalog. Once identified, TSI calculates the volume (m3) for each tree and produces a summary report.