KAP - Continuous Automatic Test Cutting

Published: 4 October 2013

The project aims to develop, implement and evaluate an automatic sample cutting system that makes it possible to continuously and automatically re-connect information from a subset of the flow from the finished product and all the way back to the forest.

Background

Effective and continuous monitoring, optimization and troubleshooting of sawmills process requires continuous feedback of information. Following each individual log and plank at the individual level requires substantial resources. However, indications are that by tracking a few individuals per day can gather enough information to achieve a large part of what we want in terms of monitoring, optimization and troubleshooting.

The big gain with a continuous feedback of information is that in this way automatically and continuously have access to the same information that would otherwise be obtained through costly test sawing. Today's test sawing a need for calibration of instrumentation and process control. An example is the X-ray of saw timber which allows to measure the spray parameters, density and heartwood percentage already in the log. To take advantage of this detailed information is required on the planks from logs where they also have access to data from X-ray equipment. Conducting a trial cuts with 200 logs to be followed all the way from log sorting to sorting is labor intensive and also takes delivery of time. Such a trial cuts are therefore costly, experience from completed test sawing show that the cost is in the order of 40 000, ie $ 200 / stock.

Technology that makes it possible to get the same information for less than a tenth of the cost is very interesting. This type of information can also be used to monitor changes in the process, such as the outcome of an investment in the cutting line or the effect of changes in timber classes.

Another advantage of the automatic and continuous feedback of information is that you also can track logs all the way from the forest to the grading. One possible application is the monitoring of the proportion of logs sorted out as pulp wood to the sawmill. The proportion of pulpwood differ between providers but it is difficult to sort out where the error occurred. Is the landowner, timber buyer, the harvester operator, forwarder, trucker or sawmill? If the proportion of unsorted hours may be reduced so also reduces the load on the timber sorting accordingly. If the proportion of unsorted timber is four percent, this means that timber sorting sorts pulpwood about two weeks per year. To find and fix some of the errors in other words, a substantial saving. Another application is the problem with the blue stain injury. By continuously monitor a subset of the timber flow so you get control of the storage time in the woods and timber yard.

Final Report

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