Automated log tagging project underway

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An exciting new log tracking project for New Zealand’s Forest Growers Research is getting underway within the Automation and Robotics programme, led by Dr Glen Murphy. The project, which is based on Swedish technology, aims to replace paper log tags with a unique punch code that will enable log identification and tracking from the time log is made in the forest to the time it is delivered to the customer.

The branding will eliminate the cost of branding logs with paint, and the cost of attaching log tags to export logs. It will also mean log measurement and other attribute data will be captured only once, eliminating the duplication that currently occurs in the forest-to-customer supply chain.

New Zealand technology companies are partnering with a Swedish company to further develop and commercialise the technology here in New Zealand. Glen Murphy is also putting together a project team which includes forestry companies, wood processors and port logistics companies, all of whom could adopt the new technology.

The plan is to have built an ‘alpha’ prototype log marker suitable for a NZ processor head and “alpha” prototype tag readers built by June 2021. This will be followed by testing of the alpha prototypes, and development of beta prototypes up to the end of 2022. Field demonstrations, commercialisation and deployment of the technology will then begin, with a project completion date before the end of 2025.

Contact: Keith Raymond ( for more information about the work of the FGR Automation and Robotics programme.

Source: Forest Growers Newsletter

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