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A real-time visualization tool for forest ecosystem management decision supportAbstract:
Forest resources management planning must address ecological, economic and social sustainability concerns. Integrating temporal and spatial interactions of management options at the landscape level is thus a key planning process. Yet the impacts of a management plan on the characteristics of a landscape are often hard to anticipate. Combining decision support tools with recent computer visualization techniques may be a workable option. This paper presents a visualization tool to produce dynamic simulations of prospective forested landscapes. Its architecture as well as its connection to a forest resources spatial decision support system are described. Emphasis is on strategies to address the geometrical complexity of large forest areas. Specifically, geographic and forest data pre-processors were developed to convert spatial and biometric data to a format used as input by the visualization tool. The latter addresses the geometrical complexity to construct virtual landscapes and it enables real-time navigation over the forest in each period of the planning horizon. Results are discussed for application to a large problem. Results show that the visualization tool provides effective real-time navigation capabilities to assess forest management impacts at the landscape level.
Journal: Computers and Electronics in Agriculture ( United States )
Pages: 3 to 12
Date: August, 2006