Expanding ground-based harvesting onto steep terrain

Timber harvesting on steep terrain has always been, and will remain, a challenge in terms of economic viability, safety and environmental performance. However new technologies, innovations and systems are improving the safety and cost-effectiveness of steep terrain logging.

The additional development of cable-assist machines is potentially making a real step-change by expanding the operating range onto very steep slopes. 

A joint New Zealand and Austrian report has reviewed these developments, including the main engineering considerations of how cable-assist works, the advances being made in how the equipment is integrated into harvesting systems and new operating guidelines.

One major takeaway from the report was that, while cable-assist system can significantly increase the ability to operate on steep slopes and avoid soil damaging slip, the actual implementation and understanding of its limitations is still in their infancy.

Click here for source (Croatian Journal of Forest Engineering)

Photo: FIEA