FPInnovations, in cooperation with Alberta Transportation and the Laval University i3C Chair, undertook a review of the starting threshold for initiating winter weight hauling in Alberta. The objective of this project was to conduct an engineering analysis of freezing pavements to determine the minimum frost depth at which log hauling at winter weight premiums (WWP) in Alberta could start without compromising pavement service life. The report describes literature on freezing pavement engineering, Canadian winter weight policies, a controlled trafficking simulation of an instrumented pavement as it was frozen, and subsequent modeling to valiidate results and extrapolate results ot a wider range of pavement structures. It was recommended that the current 1.0 m starting frost depth threshold be reduced to a depth of 700 mm.
Air-conditioning systems on Canadian logging operations have traditionally suffered form low reliability, as is reported in a survey of FERIC's member companies. This report is intended to provide an overview of the current situation, and to assist present and future users by informing them about air-conditioning principles, maintenance requirements, choice of components, and the use of these components in actual applications. With judicious choice, installation and care, such systems can be successfully applied in the forest industry.
This report chronicles the joint development of an air conditioner for forest machinery by FERIC and I & M electric rebuilders of Thunder Bay, Ontario. The air conditioner is hydraulically powered and used a compressed refrigerant gas for heat transfer. Three prototypes were designed, built, and tested in forest operations in Ontario and Quebec.
This project evaluated a number of opportunities to coastal producers related to kiln drying issues such as drying practices related to high-value products, drying with superheated steam vacuum and internal core temperature monitoring for large timbers during the heat-up phase. In summary, this project included several laboratory studies to evaluate the using superheated steam/vacuum (SS/V) for drying 7/8”x 6, green western red cedar lumber, and 8x8 and 5x(5,6,7,8,9,10,12) Douglas-fir timbers. SS/V drying yielded faster drying schedules when compared to the results obtained in industrial conventional kilns. The results obtained from the SS/V drying of WRC indicated the potential benefits of technology for drying specialty products especially when compared to drying times obtained with conventional drying (longer than 7 days). However, the results obtained also emphasize the importance of green sorting that is, sorting prior to drying to optimize drying times and reduce the variation of final moisture content.
For large cross section Douglas-firs the drying times were between 3 and 14 days depending on the severity of the drying schedule and initial moisture content distribution. The influence of moisture content and cross section during the early and late stages of the heating process were evaluated on 5x5, 6x6 and 8x8 Douglas fir timbers. Thermodynamic equilibrium was reached after 20 hours regardless of moisture content or cross section size. The knowledge is intended to be used to design conventional drying schedules for large cross section timbers.
Log yard management has a significant effect on plywood/LVL manufacturing, particularly in the aspects of log conditioning, veneer processing and product quality. At present, log conditioning is seldom optimized due mainly to the variation of species and log diameter, log storage time and seasonal climate changes. The key objectives of this work were to: 1) develop a new computer program to simulate how log temperature and conditioning time change with regard to log diameter sorting and conditioning parameters; and 2) determine the optimal log diameter sorting points in order to achieve the best log conditioning for peeling.
A new computer simulation program FPLogcon™ was successfully developed to simulate how log temperature and conditioning time change with regard to log diameter sorting and conditioning parameters in the plywood and LVL mills. Through computer simulation and two case studies, the benefits of log diameter sorting were successfully demonstrated and the log diameter sorting breakpoint was further optimized.
For spruce in mill A, compared to no diameter sorting (control), the optimum diameter sorting could result in about 28.8% reduction in heating time, and about 17.5% increase in equivalent log volume within the target temperature range.
For lodgepole pine in mill B, in the summer, compared to no diameter sorting (control), the optimum log diameter sorting breakpoint was 9-in, resulting in about 15% reduction in equivalent heating time (no change in equivalent log volume). In the winter, the optimum log diameter sorting point was 8-in, leading to about 4.5% increase in equivalent heating time along with an 11.6% increase in equivalent log volume within the target temperature range.
For plywood/LVL mills, specific benefits of log diameter sorting will include increasing the uniformity of log temperature distribution and thus veneer quality, and reducing heating time and thus energy consumption, increasing lathe efficiency, and reducing downtime and spin-out rate during peeling. Mill results will be collected to validate the benefits of optimum log diameter sorting in the new fiscal year.
FPInnovations investigated the possibility of collecting real time temperature-altitude data that could be used to determine the stability of the atmosphere. Unstable atmospheric conditions have been associated with erratic and extreme fire behaviour. An increased awareness of atmospheric stability conditions would provide fire managers an additional tool to plan firefighting activities. A firefighting aircraft with a specific sensor was sourced and two years of data was collected and analysed to determine if temperature profiles could be built using the data. Results show the data was sufficiently accurate and was collected at a frequency where temperature lapse rates can be calculated, and the stability of the atmosphere in the area of a fire could be determined.