ForestTECH | New Zealand Programme

14-15 November 2023, NEW ZEALAND | Virtual Online

Pre-Conference Workshop | Mon 13 Nov 2023

1.00 - 5.00pm

Remote Sensing Cluster Group meeting

Topics to date include use of terrestrial LiDAR to more accurately characterise trees; prediction of red needle cast in a bad year; deep learning prediction of tree dimensions using synthetic datasets; mapping of cyclone impacts; and an overview describing the pros and cons of different types of satellite imagery within the forestry industry.
Venue: Rimu Room, Scion, Rotorua [View Agenda]

Pre-Conference Workshop | Tue 14 Nov 2023

11.00 - 12.00pm

Advances in forest management planning and operations efficiency

The latest developments in CFForest, a spatially-enabled operations management system developed for Forest Owners. Trimble Forestry has been working on driving efficiency of workflows and features designed to increase the operational efficiency of forestry staff.
Dan Turkington, Business Development Manager, Trimble Forestry

Registration & Exhibits Open


Lunch & Networking

Conference | DAY ONE

Key Theme: Remote Sensing, Data Capture & Forest Inventory

Opening Introductions

1.10 pm

Artificial Intelligence: Is the world at a tipping point?

Opportunities, benefits and challenges of the technology and its adoption
Matt Lythe, Managing Director, Lynker Analytics (Workstream Lead, AI Forum NZ)

Pre-assessment thinning inventory Using drone-based LiDAR

A forest industry case study. First operational use piloted in 2022 and then again in 2023
Sam West, Senior GIS Analyst, Interpine Group & Scott Andrew, Forest Risk & Resource Manager, Juken New Zealand

Australasian designed and built solar-powered stratospheric aircraft

A game-changer for collecting frequent, high-resolution aerial data
Mark Rocket, CEO, Kea Aerospace

High-value, low-cost satellite imagery options for AU/NZ foresters

Steve Critchlow, Group Managing Director, Critchlow Geospatial

Forest change and climate change

Keeping a constant eye on your forest for fast assessment and recovery from fire, storm or disease
Noemi Gardonyi, Regional Sales & Project Manager Oceania, SKYLAB, Australia & Hamish MacPherson, Business Improvement Manager, PF Olsen

Afternoon tea & networking


Exploring the potential to link satellite and ground-based data for improved fuel load and moisture mapping, modelling, and monitoring

Mike Sutton, Manager, Innovation & Research, Forestry Corporation of NSW, Australia

The smart forest project

Opportunities for using one of the largest datasets for high-resolution landcover mapping - a digital twin of New Zealand’s productive forest estate at national scale
Grant Pearse, Team Lead Remote Sensing & GIS, Scion

Operational use of drone-based lidar for pre-harvest inventory for eucalyptus plantations

A forest industry case study with trials being operationalised early in 2023.
Perry Han, Forest Engineer and Remote Sensing Analyst, Interpine Group & Simon Honour, Fibre Supply Manager, Oji Fibre Solutions

Student Competition

Developing UAV Tree Survival Count Standard Operating Procedures
Robin Hartley, Autonomous Systems Scientist, Scion and participants from Toi Ohomai and University of Canterbury forestry student project, funded by FGR

Technology Showcase


Refreshments & networking social event

Conference | DAY TWO | Wed 15 Nov 2023

Key Theme: Tree Crop Management, Forest Establishment and Mechanised Planting



Can a vertical farm improve tree seedling production?

Results from one of the first larger forest operations using this new system to grow its tree stocks
Kenny Hay, Tree Nursery & Seed Resource Manager, Forestry and Land Scotland, Scotland (remote)

Transformational nursery technologies?

Opportunities for Vertical Farm Grown Tree Seedlings
Caroline Craggs, Head of Operations APAC, Intelligent Growth Solutions, Singapore

Using single tree location inventory to improve the quality & productivity of mechanised thinning operations

Forestry data collected using smartphones and drones. Results from an 8,000ha pine thinning operation by a large Chilean forest company
Anton Holmström, Director of Forestry, Katam Technologies AB, Sweden

Mechanised tree pruning

Initial results from a feasibility study on a commercially available remote-controlled and high-rate tree pruning unit to create fuel modified zones in softwood plantations
Braden Jenkin, Managing Director, Sylva Systems, Australia (remote)

Technology Showcase


Morning tea & networking


A first in Australia. Two planting seasons with a fully mechanised planting operation.

Results, lessons and payback - from a forest owner’s and contractor’s perspective
Paul Walpole, Director, SSEF Pty Ltd & Paul Wood, Northern Silviculture Manager, HVP, Australia (remote)

A new concept in mechanised planting. Sweden, USA, Canada, Brazil and now NZ

Lessons from early plantings by Pan Pac Forest Products with the PlantMax X2 planting unit
Richard Airey, Forester, Pan Pac Forest Products

FGR’s industry led precision silviculture programme

Progress, results and planned future activities
Claire Stewart, Manager- Precision Silviculture Programme, Forest Growers Research

Conference Concludes

Post-Conference Workshop

1.00 - 5.00pm

Tools for Foresters Workshop. Survival Surveys/ESRI Deep Learning ToolSet

The Tools for Foresters initiative will host another workshop helping to disseminate information on new technology for the forest industry. The session will begin by unpacking the SOPs developed by the students in collaboration with Tools for Foresters as part of FGR's Precision Silviculture Programme. Then Scion and Eagle Technology will host an interactive session on how to use the ESRI deep learning toolset within ArcGIS Pro, helping delegates get up to speed with the use of these tools, which will be supercharged by Scion and FGR's Deep Learning Shared Data Sets programme. Delegates can bring a laptop if they want to work along with the demo, or can simply watch the live demo by the instructors.
Distinction Rotorua Hotel, Rotorua