Mapping and Identification of Tree Seedlings Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) are platforms well suited for monitoring and assessing vegetation conditions on small to midsized projects due to the relatively low operating costs, ability for fast deployment, and greater flexibility than piloted aircraft. The UAVs have proven their potential in supplying an accurate description of the forest ecosystem using photogrammetric techniques, specifically photogrammetry and image classification. The interest in UAV applications is driven not only by the enhancements of the airborne platforms, but also by sensor developments, which currently allow the acquisition of terrestrial information with a ground sampling distance of less than 1'. The advancement in microprocessors, software, and remote sensing technologies can have a significant impact on industries heavily dependent on the measurement of renewable resources, such as agriculture and forestry. North-central Louisiana communities are relying heavily on specialized crops, such as loblolly pine plantations. The fast and accurate assessment of loblolly pine stands in all developmental stages is crucial to the forestry industry and the surrounding communities.This proposal is to further develop and implement a UAV technology solution that will allow for fast and accurate monitoring and assessment of forest resources, specifically estimation of plantation survival following first few growing seasons to ensure a fully stocked stand. Additionally, this proposal is set to determine the best practices of employing UAVs in forest applications, with a focus on the use of a multi-rotor UAV system.
Principal Investigator: Palmer, Wesley -- Forestry
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