The forest sector needs a well-developed and maintained network of forest roads to be able to supply the processing industry with raw materials from the forest. Transport of timber from the forest to the industry takes place by timber wagon train. Today, such a timber truck has a total weight of up to 60 tonnes and a length of up to 24 meters. When new forest roads are built, these vehicle dimensions are taken into account, so that the lorry can run smoothly and safely through bends and up and down steep sections. This is a prerequisite for efficient logistics.
Of the around 44,000 km of forest roads we have in Norway today, approx. 29,300 km built before 1980, at a time when timber trucks had both lower weight and length. This means that around 67% of the forest road network is not adapted to transport with today's timber lorries.
When timber lorries cannot utilize the entire road network, or are limited by road box and condition, this can lead to:
- inefficient value chains
- low utilization rate of production area and transport capacity
- accidents and injuries
- higher production costs
For a targeted upgrade of old forest roads and an efficient use of resources, we need information about where these roads are located, and what the need for upgrading or repairing these roads is. The national road database does not contain any information on road geometry, and road classes are registered only for roads built after 1990.
The aim of the project is to develop a routine for analyzing the geometry of the forest road, and identify road sections that do not meet current requirements for e.g. turning radius and steepness. We will analyze existing laser data using deep learning algorithms to locate roadsides. Based on this, the center line of the forest road can be calculated, which will give us information about the turning radius, slope and road width. With this information we can classify the road network according to road standards. This will tell us what type of timber truck the roads are suitable for.
The results will contribute to an efficient and future-oriented use of resources, increase knowledge of the condition of the road network, and support the work of modernizing the forest road network in Norway.