SilviScan is a multifaceted technology comprised of an advanced suite of software and instruments including a cell scanner, x-ray densitometer, and x-ray diffractometer, which are used together to measure wood structure and quality that are most relevant to industry. This technology can measure the tiniest fibre dimensions within a tree and the data may then be used to map the forests of an entire region. Recent work is also demonstrating its utility in providing accurate and reliable estimates of carbon dioxide consumption in forests to support climate-change research.
The integrated set of instruments is designed to evaluate samples taken non-destructively from standing trees. A cylindrical sample taken from the bark through to the tree’s center (pith) weighs just a few grams and is enough to detect the wood and fibre properties of a tree. FPInnovations is one of only three organizations in the world that owns one. The technology has recently been used by a group of Canadian researchers to quantify impact of weather conditions on Douglas fir.
Image credit: Natural Resources Canada