A purposeful classification of tree decay detection tools
Leong, Eng Choon
Burcham, Daniel C.
Date of Issue2012
School of Civil and Environmental Engineering
Tree management professionals face a daunting task in assessing tree health given large tree populations, high diversity of tree species and numerous types of tree diseases. Fortunately, there are now a variety of tree decay detection tools available. To be effective, tree management professionals will need to select the appropriate tool(s) often within a limited budget. The objective of this paper is to critically examine current tree decay detection tools to provide a better understanding of their capabilities and technical limitations. A purposeful classification of the tree decay detection tools in terms of measurement speed, resolution and accuracy is proposed which can complement many tree inspection frameworks. Specifically, a classification is adopted where screening, evaluation and diagnostic tools are applied purposefully to a population of trees. In the screening measurement methods, thermal imaging is found to be potentially useful in detecting extensive tree decay while in the diagnostic measurement methods, tomographic methods provide measurements within expected accuracy. The classification will assist tree management professionals to select the appropriate tool(s) in their work and foster a high-value but cost conscious care for trees.