ForestTECH is this region’s premier technology series. It’s run for Australasia’s forest resource managers, planners and inventory foresters by the Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA). Since 2007, it’s the one event every year run in both Australia and New Zealand that focuses on this particular part of the forestry industry. Forest owners, forestry mangers, key researchers and technology providers now also pick up the opportunity of building in their own client meetings, workshops and discussion groups around the ForestTECH event.
What happened last year?
Well over 250 delegates attended the ForestTECH series in November 2018. All of the major forestry companies in Australia and New Zealand were represented. With the technology series now well and truly making its mark on the forestry technology calendar, representatives from major Indonesian, Malaysian, South African and South American forestry companies also attended ForestTECH 2018.
At recent ForestTECH events, new data collection technologies have been highlighted along with advances being made on accessing, processing and better interpreting the associated big data streams that are being collected out in the field. The task being grappled with by many forestry companies has been how best to sort through and use the collected data and convert it into something that’s usable for all stakeholders.
The focus for ForestTECH 2018 was “unlocking the true value of data”. New systems for better measuring, managing and analysing collected information was again reviewed as part of the technology series. Emphasis was also put on research findings from recent in-forest trials and from a world class three-year, AU$1.8 million collaborative research project on remote sensing jointly funded by Forest & Wood Products Australia (FWPA), forestry companies, universities and government. Leading Australian and New Zealand researchers who’ve been working alongside local forestry companies for the first time have been able to share their results.
Adoption and the operational use of key research findings by local forestry companies also formed an essential part of the event. ForestTECH 2018 was also able to review some of the disruptive technologies that were showing real promise for research, in business and operationally, out in the forest. These included technologies like; artificial intelligence, the IOT, machine and deep learning, robotics, automation, UAV’s and the use of virtual and augmented reality.
What’s planned for 2019?
Research into remote sensing of plantation forests in this region for resource assessment and inventory management is world class. We’re leading the world right now in how new platforms and sensor technologies are being used to acquire, analyse, process and use 3D dense point cloud data. What is unique to Australasia is the collaboration that exists between researchers (with a range of disciplines both inside and outside the forestry industry), the key technology providers and industry on both sides of the Tasman who have been working on these projects.
Also, what is unusual, compared to other parts of the wood supply chain, is the sheer speed of change. UAV’s for example, just two to three years ago were being looked at as a potential and maybe cheaper tool for getting an eye up in the sky for forestry operations. They’re now been routinely used for functions like; acquiring inventory data, forest health surveys, tree survival counts, quality assurance, tree height measurements and threatened animal species management. A significant number of UAV pilots have been trained from forestry companies across both New Zealand and Australia. Small, robust lightweight UAV’s are now part of the technical tool kit being used daily by field foresters.
There is also a very short lag time (often just six months at the moment) between the time research results are being relayed to forestry companies to the time that it’s being implemented operationally. ForestTECH 2019 will provide local forestry companies with a timely and independent overview of recent advances, both in research and in the operational use of the technology, made in just 12 months on forest data collection tools and systems that have been developed to better measure, analyse, report and act on this captured information.
Key themes for 2019
Key themes for this year’s event will include:
- Storage, processing and management of "big data"
- The practical application of automation, robotics and sensors by forest managers
- Integrating virtual and augmented reality into forestry operations
- Results and lessons from reconciling remote sensing data into the field
- Satellite tools for mapping, planning and operations
- New innovations in mobile forest apps and collection tools
- Results from remote sensing research and in-forest trials
- Workflow solutions for data collected from airborne and UAV systems
- New mapping and GIS applications
- Changing skill sets required by today’s forest resource managers
Who Will Attend?
2019 Programme / Speaker Interest
For ForestTECH 2019, we will be working closely with a wide range of New Zealand, Australian and international companies, service suppliers, researchers and government bodies to develop a strong and innovative programme. If you would like to be considered as a speaker, or have any questions about the programme, please contact Brent Apthorp on firstname.lastname@example.org or (+64) 3 470 1902.
Sponsorship & Exhibition Opportunities
ForestTECH offers a tremendous opportunity for companies involved in developing innovative tools, technologies and resources for forestry planning and management to maximise their exposure to New Zealand and Australia’s forestry companies. Exhibition spaces are always at a premium. FIEA has a well-deserved reputation of providing both sponsors and exhibitors with a unique platform for promoting their products and services to the industry in BOTH New Zealand and Australia.
ForestTECH 2019 is already being planned. We always receive strong interest in the sponsorship and exhibiting opportunities available. Early partners will benefit from exposure in the the newly updated website, www.foresttech.news, which is now providing monthly communication to well over 1,500 resource managers and inventory foresters in this region.
Sponsorship and branding opportunities are also available for other Forest Industry Engineering Association (FIEA) events and in the region’s most widely read weekly e-newsletters, Friday Offcuts and WoodWeek.
For a full range of sponsorship, exhibition and branding options, please contact Gordon Thomson, Sponsorship Manager, (+64) 7 921 1384 or (+64) 27 275 8022, email@example.com.
Rotorua, NEW ZEALAND
Distinction Rotorua Hotel
390 Fenton Street, Rotorua, New Zealand
With its beautiful garden setting and located just minutes from the city centre, Distinction Rotorua Hotel is the perfect place to relax and unwind after a big day at the conference. After the event, this hotel is also a great base to enjoy the wealth of attractions and activities Rotorua has to offer. Free car parking is available at the venue, however, spaces are limited and hotel guests take priority.
Special accommodation rates (incl. GST):
- Superior Rooms: $170 per room/night
- Deluxe Rooms: $190 per room/night
- Hotel Suites: $250 per room/night
All accommodation rates are based on single, double or twin share occupancy.
6 Queens Road, Melbourne, Victoria 3004, Australia
Surrounded by green parks and minutes from the beach yet within easy reach of buzzing downtown Melbourne, Chapel Street shopping and nightlife, the Bayview Eden Melbourne has the best of both worlds. Many of the hotel’s 192 comfortable, stylishly refurbished rooms and suites overlook the picturesque Albert Park with its lake and golf course, while the rooftop spa and gym provide panoramic views of the Central Business District skyscrapers.
Special accommodation rates will be available. Details coming soon.