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Sensors 2015, 15(2), 3671-3687; doi:10.3390/s150203671

Towards an Optimized Method of Olive Tree Crown Volume Measurement

1
Dpto. de Ingeniería Rural, Área de Mecanización y Tecnología Rural, Universidad de Córdoba, 14005 Córdoba, Spain
2
Department of Agri Food Engineering and Biotechnology, Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya, Esteve Terradas 8, Campus del Baix Llobregat D4, 08860 Castelledfels, Barcelona, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 12 December 2014 / Revised: 26 January 2015 / Accepted: 30 January 2015 / Published: 4 February 2015
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Agriculture and Forestry: Sensors, Technologies and Procedures)
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Abstract

Accurate crown characterization of large isolated olive trees is vital for adjusting spray doses in three-dimensional crop agriculture. Among the many methodologies available, laser sensors have proved to be the most reliable and accurate. However, their operation is time consuming and requires specialist knowledge and so a simpler crown characterization method is required. To this end, three methods were evaluated and compared with LiDAR measurements to determine their accuracy: Vertical Crown Projected Area method (VCPA), Ellipsoid Volume method (VE) and Tree Silhouette Volume method (VTS). Trials were performed in three different kinds of olive tree plantations: intensive, adapted one-trunked traditional and traditional. In total, 55 trees were characterized. Results show that all three methods are appropriate to estimate the crown volume, reaching high coefficients of determination: R2 = 0.783, 0.843 and 0.824 for VCPA, VE and VTS, respectively. However, discrepancies arise when evaluating tree plantations separately, especially for traditional trees. Here, correlations between LiDAR volume and other parameters showed that the Mean Vector calculated for VCPA method showed the highest correlation for traditional trees, thus its use in traditional plantations is highly recommended. View Full-Text
Keywords: terrestrial LiDAR; canopy characterization; olive tree; tree crown volume terrestrial LiDAR; canopy characterization; olive tree; tree crown volume
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Miranda-Fuentes, A.; Llorens, J.; Gamarra-Diezma, J.L.; Gil-Ribes, J.A.; Gil, E. Towards an Optimized Method of Olive Tree Crown Volume Measurement. Sensors 2015, 15, 3671-3687.

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