Diniz Carlos, PhD

ESPDS: A Support Tool to Assist Forest Equipment Purchase Decisions

volume: 43, issue:

In this paper, we introduce a Microsoft Excel Workbook containing the software Equipment Selection Problem DS (ESPDS) that recognizes the special structure of the equipment selection problem. The ESPDS approach is based on the context of the Brazilian forestry sector using detailed equipment maintenance schedules. No special restrictions are needed on cost inputs over time or technologies. The output is an equipment schedule that can be used to project equipment investment needs, operational costs, and tree harvesting costs. ESPDS can be applied to support companies and contractors in order to choose the best option for their operations, as well as to achieve better equipment purchase agreements. We will show how ESPDS will also be useful in providing longer term estimates of production costs. The sensitivity analysis shows how different inputs and maintenance polices can affect the best alternative. A numerical example is included considering the entrance of a specific technology that increases the equipment productivity in order to examine whether it can change the solution. ESPDS is intuitive, flexible, and easy to calculate. Although designed for the forestry industry, the approach is readily transferable to other sectors. ESPDS may be found on the web at the following URL:

Logging Crew Attributes by Region in the Southeast USA

volume: 44, issue:

Urbanization, shrinking markets, and reduced forestry investment may affect harvesting efficiency in regions of the US South. To monitor these conditions, logging businesses have been tracked by surveys conducted by universities and trade associations. This project used a sampling approach coordinated with FIA utilization studies to sample logging crews based on a harvesting location. The approach was used to develop relationships among firm attributes and site attributes in six southeastern states (AL, GA, FL, NC, SC, and VA) from 2011 to 2018. The data included harvest attributes (location, harvest size and stand type) and logging firm attributes (production, crew labor, crew number, the number of machines by type, and machine age). For crew capital value, an equation was developed for this study using machine number and average machine age. The data from logging crews on 419 harvests were analyzed by region, harvest size, and stand type. Mean values for crew labor ranged from 3.1 to 7.1 workers. The average capital value per crew ranged from $220,000 to $524,000 per crew in the Coastal Plain with a narrower range in the Piedmont. In the Coastal Plain, higher productivity was detected for larger harvests and pine versus hardwood and mixed stands; however, in the Piedmont those trends were less obvious. Ratio of feller-bunchers, skidders and loaders were mostly 1:1:1 or 1:2:1 with 41% and 24% of samples, respectively. There were notable trends among Coastal Plain loggers regarding capital value and productivity with evidence supported by a production function. The differences in Piedmont (e.g., ownership size, market access, terrain, population density, etc.) may combine to limit daily production and labor productivity.


Web of Science Impact factor (2022): 3.200
Five-years impact factor: 3.000

Quartile: Q1 - Forestry

Subject area

Agricultural and Biological Sciences