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Forestry VR Project to Give Plantations Better Information About Quality, Progress

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An example of a virtual reality forest.

Ideally, the technology will be able to run an algorithm and highlight points of interest or potential problems for plantation managers that would otherwise be easily missed when walking through a forest.

Credit: Spencer O'Keeffe

Scientists at the University of South Australia (UniSA) are creating virtual reality (VR) maps of forest plantations to advance forestry management.

UniSA's Spencer O'Keeffe said, "My work is looking at using immersive analytics tools, which are virtual reality, augmented reality, and 3D [three-dimensional] environments to actually interact with virtual subsets of the forest and gain a deeper understanding of the inner workings."

The technology would algorithmically emphasize areas of interest or potential challenges for plantation managers that would otherwise be overlooked in the field.

A scalable project would allow a single worker to map a 20-meter (65-foot) plot in just 10 minutes with a backpack scanner.

O'Keeffe said plantation managers could use the technology to optimize management while minimizing waste in a repeatable and adjustable manner.

From ABC (Australia)
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