Implementing Residue Chippers On Harvesting Operation for Biomass Recovery
Type of DegreeThesis
Forestry and Wildlife Sciences
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Three operations that implemented a small residue chipper on their conventional logging operations were studied in 2006. Two of the jobs were thinning operations, the remaining operation conducted clearcuts. All three implemented the chipper in a different way: the first operation fed the chipper using the same loader that handled roundwood sorting and loading; the second operation used a separate loader with the chipper; and the third operation used a small Bell Logger for feeding the chipper. All three operations used set-out trucking as their method of transportation. Production was recorded from several months of data for Operations 1 and 2. Equipment costs for were estimated using an after-tax cash flow method, and trucking costs were also included. No cost was added for stumpage or profit. Operation 1 averaged 1.4 loads per day at an estimated cost of $11.81/ton of fuel chips. Operation 2 averaged 2.2 loads per day with a cost of $12.18/ton; and Operation 3 managed 4 loads per day at $10.66/ton. The fuel chips produced generally contained about 80% wood, with the remaining material being evenly divided between bark, needles and twigs. Operation 2 eventually shut down because the production of fuel chips was interfering with his roundwood production. Implementing a residue chipper on a conventional operation has the potential to produce fuel chips for a biomass consuming facility, provided it does not interfere with roundwood production. Set-out trucking aids the operation by minimizing the delay time for trucks.