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Discrete-Event Simulation of Ground-Based Timber Harvesting Operations

1
Department of Forest Engineering, Resources and Management, College of Forestry, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
2
School of Mechanical, Industrial and Manufacturing Engineering, College of Engineering, Oregon State University, Corvallis, OR 97331, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Forests 2018, 9(11), 683; https://doi.org/10.3390/f9110683
Received: 29 September 2018 / Revised: 24 October 2018 / Accepted: 30 October 2018 / Published: 31 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Forest Operations: Planning, Innovation and Sustainability)
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Abstract

Operational studies are necessary to support production and management decisions of forest industries. A time study (TS) approach is widely used in timber harvesting operations to understand the performance of individual harvesting machines as well as the entire system. However, several limitations of the TS approach include the use of generalized utilization rates, incapability of capturing interactions among equipment, and model extrapolation in sensitivity analysis. In this study, we demonstrated the use of discrete event simulation (DES) techniques in modeling a ground-based timber harvesting system, and compared the DES results with those of the TS model developed with the same observed data. Although both TS and DES models provided similar estimation results for individual machine cycle times and productivities, the estimated machine utilization rates were somewhat different due to the difference in synthesizing machine processes in each approach. Our sensitivity analysis and model expansion to simulate a hypothetical harvesting system suggest that the DES approach may become an appropriate method for analyzing complex systems especially where interactions among different machine processes are unknown. View Full-Text
Keywords: discrete-event; machine interactions; operational details; hypothetical systems discrete-event; machine interactions; operational details; hypothetical systems
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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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She, J.; Chung, W.; Kim, D. Discrete-Event Simulation of Ground-Based Timber Harvesting Operations. Forests 2018, 9, 683.

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