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Forests 2017, 8(11), 442; https://doi.org/10.3390/f8110442

The Optimum Slash Pile Size for Grinding Operations: Grapple Excavator and Horizontal Grinder Operations Model Based on a Sierra Nevada, California Survey

1
College of Bioresource Sciences, Nihon University, Fujisawa 252-0880, Japan
2
Faculty of Agriculture, University of Miyazaki, Miyazaki 889-2192, Japan
3
Graduate School of Bioresource Sciences, Nihon University, Fujisawa 252-0880, Japan
4
Department of Biological and Agricultural Engineering, University of California, Davis, CA 95616, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Raffaele Spinelli
Received: 25 September 2017 / Revised: 10 November 2017 / Accepted: 13 November 2017 / Published: 15 November 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forest Operations, Engineering and Management)
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Abstract

The processing of woody biomass waste piles for use as fuel instead of burning them was investigated. At each landing of slash pile location, a 132 kW grapple excavator was used to transfer the waste piles into a 522 kW horizontal grinder. Economies of scale could be expected when grinding a larger pile, although the efficiency of the loading operation might be diminished. Here, three piles were ground and the operations were time-studied: Small (20 m long × 15 m wide × 4 m high), Medium (30 × 24 × 4 m), and Large (35 × 30 × 4 m) piles. Grinding the Medium pile was found to be the most productive at 30.65 bone dry tons per productive machine hour without delay (BDT/PMH0), thereby suggesting that there might be an optimum size of slash pile for a grinding operation. Modeling of the excavator and grinder operations was also examined, and the constructed simulation model was observed to well-replicate the actual operations. Based on the modeling, the productivity of grinding at a landing area of 710 m2 of slash pile location was estimated to be 31.24 BDT/PMH0, which was the most productive rate. View Full-Text
Keywords: fuel reduction; slash pile; grinding operation; grapple excavator; horizontal grinder; simulation; Sierra Nevada, California; wildfire fuel reduction; slash pile; grinding operation; grapple excavator; horizontal grinder; simulation; Sierra Nevada, California; wildfire
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Yoshioka, T.; Sakurai, R.; Kameyama, S.; Inoue, K.; Hartsough, B. The Optimum Slash Pile Size for Grinding Operations: Grapple Excavator and Horizontal Grinder Operations Model Based on a Sierra Nevada, California Survey. Forests 2017, 8, 442.

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