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Torque required to twist and cut loose Scots pine stumps

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Stump wood is a possible source of renewable energy, but before its potential as a fuel can be utilised to a high degree, new harvesting techniques should be developed to reduce the environmental impact (notably ground disturbance) of harvesting stumps. The forces required to lift and drag stumps out of the soil are known. In this study, two unknown and important parameters were addressed: the torque required to uproot stumps by twisting them and the torque required to cut lateral roots around stumps. A new, improved stump-twisting rig was designed and used in trials with 28 Scots pine (Pinus sylvestris) trees (breast-height diameter over bark, 153–427 mm). The measured torque requirements ranged from 10 to 50 kNm. Twisting stumps required more torque than cutting lateral roots around stumps and the required torque increased with increases in stump size. The results indicate that a wrist on a big feller-buncher, but not a conventional rotator used on forest machines, should be able to generate sufficient torque to cut the roots around stumps such as those used in this study.
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Keywords: Bioenergy; cutting roots; force; stump harvesting; uprooting

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Forest Resource Management,Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences, Umeå, Sweden

Publication date: 2012-12-01

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