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A Simulation Approach for Optimal Timber Management Scheduling

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A scheduling approach is described that can be applied to large timber management scheduling problems. It takes advantage of the special characteristics of timber management scheduling problems. Specifically, it is assumed that future forest output levels are difficult to predict, so minor violations of output constraints are not critical. The approach is based on the economic interpretation of the key dual variables of a linear programming formulation of the problem. The values of the key dual variables are assumed to be known, and the dual problem is decomposed and solved in parts by using dynamic programming. The schedule developed is tested for primal feasibility by comparing its forest output levels to estimates of desired levels. If levels are significantly different, the results are used to re-estimate the key dual variables and the process is repeated. Duality theory is used to prove that the schedules produced are optimal schedules for their corresponding output levels. Results from applications of the approach are described. Forest Sci. 30:220-238.
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Keywords: Dantzig-Wolfe decomposition algorithm; forest planning; harvest scheduling

Document Type: Journal Article

Affiliations: Professor, College of Forestry, University of Minnesota, St. Paul, MN 55108

Publication date: 1984-03-01

More about this publication?
  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2016 Impact Factor: 1.782 (Rank 17/64 in forestry)

    Average time from submission to first decision: 62.5 days*
    June 1, 2016 to Feb. 28, 2017

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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