There is nothing new about collecting and sending data directly from the harvester’s measuring device to forest companies. However, FOBIA has developed a prototype tool that also serves the needs of harvesting contractors.
Seven years ago a working group set up by the The Trade Association of Finnish Forestry, Earthmoving and Energy Contractors (Koneyrittäjien Liitto) came up with the idea of a tailor-made tool for harvesting contractors. Tietohippu Oy has continued development of what has become known as the ‘UDI/UDD tool’ as part of the FOBIA project, and a prototype is now available for harvesting contractors.
The tool uses the StanForD 2010 standard, which is now in common use in Finland. Forest companies use systems based on this standard in their data collection at harvesting sites. So why not gather information for harvesting contractors about expenses and circumstances that have an impact on the profitability of their business?
Harvesting expenses are stored systematically
In addition to providing standard data to a forest company, the new tool allows the collection and transmission of specified data directly to a harvesting contractor. Data can be gathered on material expenses such as covers for piles of stored energy wood and treatment substances to protect stumps from diseases and rot. Additional working hours and the depth of snow obstructing harvesting operations can also be fed into the system. A query may be raised within the tool, for example about the amount of materials used. The driver feeds the data as a message to the company office. Information is transferred in real time from the harvester to administration, allowing fast and accurate invoicing.
Luke’s study about the consumption of stump treatment liquid illustrates how user-defined data can be utilised.
The software offers many benefits. Invoicing of hourly work becomes more precise when additional hours are recorded accurately. Follow-up of material expenses and invoicing become more systematic. There are improvements in the profitability of each harvested forest stand, as well as in the related administration. As Timo Komulainen from Tietohippu Oy explains, the contractor chooses what data to gather:
“With the help of this tool, we can gather information that a harvesting contractor needs. It is delivered only to the contractor and he decides how the data is utilized.“
Forest machine manufacturer Komatsu Oy has tested and fine-tuned the software with Tietohippu Oy. Komatsu is currently the only brand that provides software support for the new UDI/UDD tool. Method development is continuing in the FOBIA project and it is hoped that other measuring device manufacturers will become involved too. As Timo Komulainen sums up:
“We aim to take the tool into production use. This depends on the interest of contractors to make the most of it. I hope other harvesting brands take the tool into use as well because the more there is support for it, the better for the contractors.”
Text: Anu Ruusila/Cordial Communications