Title

Application of Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) to Quantify Biomass, Stem Volume, and Basal Area in a Mature Norway Spruce (Picea Abies) Plantation in Central New York

Date of Award

4-6-2018

Semester of Degree

May

Document Type

Open Access Thesis

Major Professor

Eddie Bevilacqua

Steering Committee Member

Stephen Stehman

Abstract

The focus of this study is to evaluate the applicability of low cost, commercially accessible UAS platforms, equipment, and techniques for forest inventory. This involved quantifying total aboveground biomass by: a complete field enumeration of aboveground biomass in a Norway Spruce (Picea abies) plantation, acquiring UAS imagery over the plantation, deriving indirect estimates of tree size distribution information from the imagery, then correlating imagery information with field biomass measurements. Results showed generally poor correlations between spatially explicit UAS-derived metrics and field measurements of forest biomass. Recommended refinements to UAS mission parameters to improve forest biomass estimation were detailed.

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