e-Cambium wood quality modelling project

In late October, a major mill trial was undertaken at the Hyne Tumbarumba mill as a part of the current e-Cambium wood quality modelling project. The project results will help develop a tool that provides insights into the wood quality implications of management decisions around site choices, climate, environment and silviculture.

Part of a follow on from a previous project (PNC 196-1011), the trial consisted of 360 logs collected from 12 sites (6 HVP and 6 Forest Corp NSW) with the logs being representative of the size and stiffness groupings expected from these regions over future years.  Individual logs were marked to allow identification of its substituent boards and a disc sample recovered for further analysis before being processed through the mill. Each product board was then characterised for its strength/stiffness properties via existing mill grading systems.

The analysis of the results of the trial will seek to correlate the properties of the product boards with those predicted by the existing e-cambium model which links site quality and climate records to tree growth and quality predictions.  Results are expected to be presented to the project steering committee in April of next year.

One of the researchers associated with the Tumbarumba mill trial also travelled to south east Queensland to evaluate the application of the Resistograph technology to the Queensland pine estate.  Measurements were taken from four commercial crops: Carribea, Slash and the F1 and F2 hybrids.  This work was supported by the Solid Wood Innovation (SWI) consortium and will result in a small briefing note to SWI members on the application of this characterisation tool on other commercial timber species.