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Advances in FOrestry Control and aUtomation Systems in Europe

Final Report Summary - FOCUS (Advances in FOrestry Control and aUtomation Systems in Europe)

Executive Summary:
FOCUS Advances in Forestry Control and Automation Systems in Europe is a FP7 SME-target collaborative project. The main goal of FOCUS is to improve sustainability, productivity, and product marketability of forest-based value chains through an innovative technological platform for integrated planning and control of the whole tree-to-product operations, to be used by all chain actors (from forest-producers to industry players). The FOCUS platform combines sensors and similar technologies with efficient communication mechanisms and innovative software components to support managers in better planning and control of the entire process chain.
The concept behind FOCUS is to make use of large amounts of data from a multifold of sources across the forest-based supply chains to improve on-the-fly decisions about the management of forest processes. Therefore, the project leverages on disparate sensors and similar technologies developed over recent years (e.g. environmental monitoring sensors, machinery productivity sensors and tack-and-trace solutions) and extends them with efficient communication mechanisms, orchestrated by a novel FOCUS core interoperability component. Dashboards and business analytics enable remote monitoring/supervising of inter-firm operations current state and performance. Other innovative software components developed using a Model-based Control, further support managers in control and dynamically re-planning forthcoming operations, in order to better adjust forest operations to current state and overcome delays and unforeseen events. State-of-the-art mobile devices assure efficient communication of new plans and instructions to machinery and workers.
Prototypes of an FOCUS platform for integrated planning and control were implemented and tested in case studies in Finland, Belgium, Switzerland, Austria and Portugal. Together, these cases cover the four main forest-based value chains in Europe (lumber, pulpwood, biomass, cork) and the whole range of operations from forest planning & growth, harvesting, wood transportation and downstream industrial processing.
For this purpose, FOCUS brought together leading SMEs, experts and organisations in the fields of precision forestry, sensors, machinery and software development. The consortium is led by INESC TEC (Portugal) and includes 11 other partners from 6 European countries, 6 of which are SMEs commercializing forestry machinery, software or services. The work was structured into 7 work packages: FOCUS platform specification (WP1), improvements in data collection tools (WP2); development of control and planning tools (WP3); integration into prototypes (WP4) and its assessment in the pilot cases with the engagement of stakeholders (WP5); Dissemination and training (WP6) and project management, quality assurance and reporting (WP7).
FOCUS’ main results are: improved sensors technologies for monitoring environmental conditions, raw materials traceability and machinery/operations productivity; novel software for integrated forest control and planning; novel FOCUS core interoperability component (available at under a MIT open-source license); new business models for collaboration among players of the forest based-supply chains; and prototypes of the FOCUS overall technological solution, assessed in pilot cases in Europe.
The impact of FOCUS results was enhanced through a number of dissemination and training actions executed since July 2014, including the project web site on-line since the beginning of the project, 25 presentations in 21 international events and meetings, 3 newsletters, 10 peer-reviewed publications, thus extending the knowledge in precision forestry, sensing and automation. Partners hosted 10 Masters and 2 PhD students. Furthermore, 3 workshops were organized for end-users. 2 training courses were held in the Arnsberg forest training center and at BFH headquarters in Zollikofen. 12 Podcasts for wider dissemination are available at FOCUSnet. The creation of favorable conditions for commercial exploitation of project results is a priority during the entire project. The role of exploitation manager was taken by a SME of the consortium. 3 exploitation seminars were organized with external experts in IPR management and business models. The Plan to Use and Disseminate project results was periodically updated. The last version submitted in the end of the project includes the FOCUS IPR-Matrix filled-up by all partners, as well as the detailed description of 6 business cases drawn to take FOCUS results to the marketplace.

Project Context and Objectives:
Forest-based industries contribute today to some 8% of the EU’s total manufacturing added value and sustainably manage forests covering 35% of the EU’s landmass . This economic sector provides income for almost 16 million forest owners, has a workforce of over 3.35 million people1 and is a key driver for employment and development of rural areas. It further provides society with a variety of forest-based products and services, such as solid wood, engineered wood, paper-based products to biomass and cork.
A major driver for higher sustainability and efficiency of Europe’s forest-based supply chains is process digitalization and automation, as recognised in several strategic publications . The production process of most of the forest-based products is industrialized, fully automated and subjected to detailed planning. However, in many cases the preceding operations related with long term forest management, forest harvesting, distribution and logistics are not, despite the fact that it may represent 30 to 50% of the total production costs of the finished products . Empirically-driven planning and decision-making still persists. Partly due to the fact that information about the progress of forest operations is seldom collected (or shared).
Over recent years, significant research was done in machinery automation and sensing for remote data collection. For example, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) in wood trucks improves remote monitoring and supports better planning of routes and drivers schedules . Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) technologies enable track-and-trace of the wood from the forest to the mill . However, these are still disparate solutions, case specific, not easily combined to cover multiple operations of the forest-based supply chain. On the other hand, INDUSTRY 4.0 emphasizes the need to enhance business analytics, planning and decision-making by new software components that make use of large amounts of data to support on-the-fly decisions that affect not only the productivity of forest operations but also of the industrial transformation downstream.
Therefore, long term sustainability of European forest based industries and the development of rural areas require further improvements in technology for integration and automation of forest related processes, pushing forward precision forestry in line with INDUSTRY 4.0.
In this context, the mail goal of FOCUS is to improve sustainability, productivity, and product marketability of forest-based value chains through an innovative technological platform for integrated planning and control of the whole tree-to-product operations, to be used by all chain actors (from forest-producers to industry players). The FOCUS platform combines sensors and similar technologies with efficient communication mechanisms and innovative software components to support managers in better monitoring, planning and control of the entire process chain. As shown in the FOCUS project, there are multiple configurations of the platform, combining the best sensors and software-specific for forest planning, harvesting, distribution, transportation and industrial processing. However the platform underlying concept is always the same, and the FOCUS core is the common software component and key enabler.
The concept behind the FOCUS project is to make use of large amounts of data from a multifold of sources across forest-based supply chains, to improve on-the-fly monitoring, planning and control of forest operations. In one hand, managers can rely on dashboards and business analytics, to remotely monitor (in real-time) the current state and performance of their own operations as well as related operations done by others. It can foster inter-firm collaboration. These software components are feed by information collected with a multitude of sensors and similar technology that work in an integrated way. The technological challenge of collecting and processing large amounts of information in real-time from various sources is also addressed. In another hand, their planning and decision making processes are improved by using novel software components for control and dynamically re-planning forthcoming operations, in order to better adjust to operations current state and overcome delays and unforeseen events. State-of-the-art mobile devices assure efficient communication of new plans and instructions to machinery and workers.
FOCUS address the following specific objectives:
1. Design the concept and architecture of the FOCUS technological platform
The FOCUS technological platform consists in of sensors (and similar technologies) combined with a software layer and connected in a way that enable effective monitoring, planning and control of multiple operations over the supply chain. As shown in the FOCUS project, there are multiple configurations of the platform, combining the best sensors and software-specific for forest planning, harvesting, distribution, transportation and industrial processing. However the platform underlying concept is always the same, and the FOCUS core is the common software component and key enabler. The FOCUS concept builts on a Model-based Control approach. Accordingly, real-time information enables monitoring operations status and performance as well as controlling the execution of operations in respect to the accomplishment of the ruling plans. Instructions are send to workers and equipment to adjust or replan forthcoming operations whenever there are major delays or other unforeseen events.
The FOCUS innovative platform architecture is scalable and flexible, enabling its wide application (i.e. processes of the supply chain from forest management to industrial processing, many agents involved, different temporal-spatial scales for planning and control); but it is also interoperable and built on a plug-and-play mode, making it easy to assemble the set of components that best suite each application.
2. Improve sensors and similar technology for process data collection
The sensors and similar technologies being developed and/or adapted by the SMEs in the consortium, collect information (manually or automatically) about environment conditions, product flows, and machinery /operations productivity. Examples are: Radio Frequency Identification Systems for wood traceability, solutions for monitoring environmental conditions, solutions for transportation management including trucks positioning systems based in GPS and fuel consumption, harvesting productivity solutions based in sensors in harvesting machinery, mobile multi-touch applications, embedded devices in industrial equipment.
3. New planning and control systems
New controllers are being developed for each process of the supply chain that may go from forest management, harvesting, forest logistics and industrial processing. These controllers rely in model-based-control principles to monitor the current state of all operations, anticipate future states and foresee the adjustments needed in the machinery and product flows to readily adapt to plan. Sophisticated planning systems rely in Operations Research methods for providing optimal resources allocation plans and schedules, taking into account aspects like resource availability, quality (and quality variation along storage time), weather and forest site conditions, harvesting seasonality, variations in the demand of final products and workforce capacity. The proposed optimization methods can be applied both at local (i.e. process) and global (i.e. chain) levels.
4. Develop an innovative FOCUS Core interoperability component
The FOCUS core is the backbone component that assures interoperability between the other components. This software component, its detailed specifications and the new complementary methodologies should be open-sourced in order to foster wider use of the FOCUS technological platform, beyond the SMEs on the consortium.
5. Design, set-up and assess industrial pilots use cases
Fully functional prototypes of the FOCUS technological platform are developed for the pilot cases, which together will cover the different processes of the supply chain the four main forest-based value chains in Europe (lumber, pulpwood, biomass, cork), accounting for the geographical specificities. Prototypes should be validated in the experimental sites under real life situations, supporting also the project dissemination and exploitation.
6. Guidelines for collaborative business processes in forest-based supply chains
A set of guidelines are established for implementing collaboration strategies, lean principles and adopting simulation tools in forest-based supply chains.
7. Disseminate and exploit research results
Project results are widely disseminated in the course of workshops, publications and other dissemination actions that take place during the entire project, according to the FOCUS dissemination plan. The FOCUS consortium should clearly define IPR rights and set in place strategies and business models towards future commercial exploitation of project results.
These objectives impose new challenges in terms of data management, systems integration, machinery control and automation. Thus, paving the way to new technological and scientific advances as well as contributing to Europe wide initiatives such as bio-economy and INDUSTRY 4.0.

Project Results:
The work done from 0101/01/2014 to 30/06/2016 was structured into 7 work packages: FOCUS platform specification (WP1), improvements in data collection tools (WP2); development of control and planning tools (WP3); integration into prototypes (WP4) and its assessment in the pilot cases with the engagement of stakeholders (WP5); Dissemination and training (WP6) and project management, quality assurance and reporting (WP7).

Work Package 1. Platform definition and design
WP1 (from 01/01/2014 to 31/12/2014, head by BFH), aims to design and specify the FOCUS platform based on a thorough literature review and on the analysis of current planning and control processes in pilot cases. The main findings of the literature review were presented in D1.1. Report on State-of-the-Art, submitted in 30/06/2014 and are published in a scientific peer-reviewed journal, still under revision.
The detailed description of the current processes and future requirements in the 4 pilot cases selected for this project was presented in Deliverables 1.2. and 1.3. Together, the cases cover all the stages of the forest-based supply chain, including forest management, harvesting, transportation up to the transformation centers, industrial transformation and sales. The cases are complementary in terms of the temporal-spatial scales addressed. The main stakeholders of forest-based supply chains are represented.

Case 1: Hierarchical forest management
The case addresses Forest inventory data collection, strategic forest planning and harvest scheduling, under the perspective of a company responsible for managing a public forestland area.

Case 2: Biomass supply chain
The case in Belgium addresses strategic biomass supply chains design decisions, under the perspective of a private biomass-for-bioenergy supplier. The case in Finland focus on planning the production and distribution of wood chips to meet the demand of energy content of biomass centrals, under the perspective of the wood chips supplier.

Case 3: Forest harvesting and wood transportation
The first location in Germany covers harvesting and forwarding decisions up to the roadside, under the perspective of the harvesting service provider. The second location in Austria covers wood transportation from the roadside up to the mill, under the perspective of a transportation hauler.

Case 4: Cork supply chain:
The case addresses cork stockyard management and cork industrial transformation, under the perspective of a cork stoppers producer.

The main outcome of WP1 is the FOCUS platform architecture and its underlying innovative concept that uses a Model-based Control Approach. Report D1.4. Specifications of the FOCUS platform, submitted in 30/12/2014 (publicaly available at describes the key components of the proposed architecture according to the standard arc42, including the role of the model-based controllers in the pilot cases, their linkage with the planning tools, the FOCUS mobile basic functions, the functionalities of the FOCUS core interoperability component and the way to connect there the singular components.
In order to foster the wide use of the FOCUS platform, the consortium decided that the FOCUS Core should be licensed under MIT open-source license, as described in D1.5. Guidelines for collaboration in SCM. This is a simple and permissive license. It lets future users of the FOCUS Core to access and change the code as long as they provide attribution back to the FOCUS consortium and do not consider the consortium liable.

Work Package 2. Process data collection
WP2 was executed in parallel with WP3 between 24/06/2014 and 30/11/2015. The work led by VTT aims at developing/adapting several sensors and similar technologies for on-site process data collection, according to the requirements established in WP1. All tasks were executed in parallel and synergies were discussed in the course of periodic remote meetings. Prototypes are progressively developed in the course of short specification-implementation-validation cycles, enabling the validation of the partners and stakeholders during the development stage. The summary of WP2 main achievements is as follows:
a) Sensors for assessing moisture content and traceability of biomass and cork
Reports Deliverables 2.1. and D2.2 summarize the work done in evaluating alternative methods for measuring moisture content retrieved from previous research studies and also studying remote sensing components for the collection of environmental data. The choice for environmental monitoring and remote measurement system was the 433 MHz active RFID sensor transponders for measuring humidity and temperature. Other components include the reader devices, reference moisture sensors, weather stations and software.
A pilot to monitor cork drying (Pilot case 4) was setup in the laboratory and experiments on cork samples delivered by WFS have been carried out at VTT. Results agree well with the expectations and have been validated by the partners. Field test setups for Pilot Cases 2 (Biomass drying in Finland) and 4 (Cork drying in Portugal) were designed and constructed during November 2014

b) Sensors coupled in the harvesting machinery for getting machinery data and productivity
Deliverable 2.3. Report on Productivity software describes the work done in adapting the software TimeControl and Polterluchs owned by Whalers to obtain (near) real time volume, productivity and precise log data from harvesters, forwarders and skyline yarder systems and also to create interfaces and devices for utilizing and displaying process data. Data communication and data structure issues were also dealt. In concrete, the data produced by harvester`s and forwarder`s is now available for supervising the operations in the office. The output data is also structured to then feed the planning and control components of the integrated FOCUS platform for pilot case 3.
c) Sensors and embedded devices in wood trucks for monitoring truck positioning and load status information
Deliverable 2.4. Report in embedded devices for forestry machinery and wood trucks describes the work done to access vehicle sensor measurements like fuel consumption, fuel state, engine revolutions, boom state via the CAN-Bus and/or the OBDII (Onboard Diagnosis II) – Interface in forest machines and wood trucks. One major result was the harmonization for collecting machine sensor measurements data e.g. for harvesters and wood trucks according to the OGC Sensor Observation Service standard (SOS 2.0) and the ISO 19156 Standard on Observation & measurements.
A first prototype application was developed interfacing car/truck OBD/CAN-Bus via Bluetooth, considering the requirements from pilot cases 3. In a final stage this app has been applied as middleware to share required truck & position data in a standardized/harmonized manner. As a first result the app. has been designed to read data and the required meta-information from the OBD-interface from the trucks. Due to the lack of harmonization of these sensor data streams across different truck manufacturers (OBD-WWH for trucks is still not broadly available), the App design and implementation has been altered for using smart device sensors and auxiliary sources to monitor the chosen truck status parameters to overcome interoperability issues caused by non-standardized truck manufacturer specifications. The App monitors truck location, speed, bearing and truck status (e.g. log loading or unloading events). The calculation of unloading events is based on the truck’s geolocation and is computed by the novel open sourced FOCUS Geofence micro-service.

Complementary, the open sourced FOCUS Geofence digitizing micro-app enables the integration of geofence polygons based on standardized OGC WebFeatureService, providing also a GeoJSON service for streaming geofence information. The App is designed and developed to work in all areas, regardless on the availability of network coverage. The sensor measurements will be cached and communicated to the FOCUS core if network coverage is missing. Additionally, a second App for smart devices has been developed to collect dissenting road condition and forest road barrier information. As described this simple App is used for documenting barriers (online/offline with caching) along the forest roads e.g. by rangers using standardized OGC Web Feature Services transactional interface standard. The Apps interlink with the developments ofAnother important result WP4 and the reframing in WP5 - is the web-site for remote harvester, skidder and truck monitoring and truck fleet management. The websites that combines several micro-service apps into a unique map-centered management dashboard application. Examples include: Live Truck Streaming Monitoring and truck average day work monitoring . All results were developed by RSA-iSPACE in collaboration with HCSTMK and an the external stakeholder use case partner Meyr-Melnhof.

d) Sensors embedded in the industrial processing machinery
Deliverable 2.5. summarizes the work done to adapt cork processing machinery to better control and plan industrial operations as well as enabling cork trace-and-track across the transformation process (linkage with RFID solutions described before). Two 2 industrial machines commercialized by Azevedos for the cork transformation process were selected. These machineries will embed RFID readers to be able to track and trace the cork batches across the production process. The goal is also to adjust the cork drying chamber parameters according to the moisture estimates of the cork bathes to be dried. For this purpose, integration is needed with the YAMS system that will store all relevant data.

e) Mobile devices to be used on-site for manually recording relevant information about operations execution, display operations status and instructions
The FOCUS mobile aims at providing: (a) a mean to visualize information in dashboards and adapt decisions proposed by planning tools (as described in Deliverable 2.6.) and (b) a facility to acquire missing data on-site in the forest (as in D3.2.). FOCUS mobile was developed by BFH based on the requirements gathered from stakeholders involved in pilot cases 1 and 3. It is an Android application (Java/XML), object-oriented, Target platform: Android 4.4 (SDK 19).Main features of the FOCUS mobile include: notifications, terrain overview, stand information and map, wood pile information, machinery overview, order status, access to plan. It can disday CAN-bus data via iFOS app. in order to enable for machine data overview (engine revolution, fuel revolution, vehicle payload). This App. is integrated with TimeControl in order to provide relevant harvesting data (volume data (per log), driver’s working data (start & end time; productive time; breakes ...) GPS, productivity).
Another important result was the improvement of the MOTI app. and its integration with the FOCUS mobile App (Figure 7). MOTI is an application that takes advantage of Smartphone technology for the simple and convenient capturing of key data about forests. The app is specifically designed for forestry professionals to capture in an easy, cost effective and reliable manner key variables such as basal area, number of trees per ha, tree height and growing stock, as a single measurement combined in a sample plot, or at the level of a stand inventory with automatic calculation of the error range of the estimations.

f) Integration of data from multiple data collection sensors
One important development in FOCUS was the specification of the logical data model for harmonizing data management for different measurement data sources combined through the FOCUS core, as described in deliverable D2.7. Data Management. It builds on internationally acknowledged standards such as OGC Sensor Observation Service standard (SOS 2.0) and harmonized sensor Observation & measurements model (ISO 19156).
D2.7. further includes the architecture to organize and access these FOCUS data sources using service oriented architectures and adopting technically standardized interfaces. To simplify the overall data management via the FOCUS core, the additional data sources needed to manage the FOCUS apps like the FOCUS dashboard themselves organize their internal data structures. The OGC Sensor Observation Service (SOS) for the FOCUS project was clearly defined. The SOS is a standard interface for a Web service client that makes it possible to organize current, simulated or archived sensor data over a network such as the Internet. Sensor Observation Services (SOS) are essential parts of Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDIs), which are mainly organized as open or distributed IT-architectures.

Work Package 3. Control and planning tools
Similarly to WP2, WP3 was executed between 24/06/2014 and 30/11/2015. The work led by Simosol aims at developing planning and control components adequate for the 4 pilot cases. The summary of WP3 main achievements is as follows:

a) FOCUS software components for operations control
The conceptualization and implementation of model-based control approaches for forest-based supply chains was one of the major challenges of the FOCUS project. The MPC (Model Predictive Control) is an advanced control methodology is use specifically for industrial processes that consists on the evaluation of a cost function along a sliding prediction window in order to compute the following control actions. The FOCUS project extended this concept to the forest supply chain and proposed an innovative concept that emerge from the collaboration of control experts with forest engineers and experts in planning. Control components were developed for all pilot cases, as described in the deliverable D3.1. Report on model-based control.

Model-based controllers for pilot cases 1 and 3 are being developed alongside with the tactical planning tools (T3.3.). Pilot case 4 encompassed the specification development of a MPC for the drying chamber for the cork stoppers, as described in T2.4. The task also included testing different sensors for measuring air temperature and humidity as well as measuring cork stoppers humidity. Results are documented in D3.1. The dynamic models were developed using Discrete-Event Simulation (DES) ans were implemented with Python’s package SimPy or SIMIO simulation software. The interaction with the planning tools was also specified and tested in the scope of WP4.
b) Decision support systems for strategic forest planning
The commercial software Iptim for strategic forest planning (by Simosol) was improved according to the requirements of Pilot Cases 1 and 2, as described in described in Report D3.3 Report on optimal strategic forest planning. The improvements in Iptim for Pilot Case 1 (Switzerland) included: reviewing the optimization model and optimization engine to account for the specific needs of the Swiss case; embedding the WIS 2 research prototype developed by BFH for Swiss forest planning; adapting/developing new Graphical user Interfaces for the Swiss case; testing and discussing the results with stakeholders in PC1; integration with WinForstPro forestry logistics tool as a data source.

In respect to PC2 (Belgium) the major result is extending the research prototype OPTIMASS Decision Support System for strategic biomass supply chain planning developed by KU Leuven and its integration with Iptim. The emphasis was on the supply and management of poplar wood to the Sappi paper mill located in the town of Lanaken (Province of Limburg, in the Flemish part of Belgium). For their wood (logs and chips), Sappi relies exclusively on the company Sapin, a joint venture between Sappi and Norske Skog. The adaptations in the OPTIMASS engine included: changes in the reference data model, adaptations in the Mixed Integer Programming model to deal with multi-periods, specification of the model outputs. Iptim was further extended with new graphical user interfaces to display the results obtained with OPTIMASS.

c) Decision support systems for forest operations planning
The research prototype WOFS by INESC TEC was extended with new/improved optimization engines for supporting tactical and operational planning in all pilot cases, as described in D3.4. (Table 3). A new concept of reactive planning for forest operations was proposed, to address the impacts of uncertainty and unplanned events over the plan both during the planning process and while the plan is executed. This concept relies in quick optimization models and heuristics for planning and replanning operations as well as discrete-event simulation for accessing the impact of the unplanned events over the plan targeted objectives. The feedback loop and feedforward loop of this optimization-simulation approach were clearly defined for all pilot cases. The improvements in WOFS include: extending existing transportation module to foster collaboration (in the scope of PC3); new optimization model for tactical harvest scheduling including team assignment in PC1; new optimization model and new solution approach for the wood chips tactical and operational scheduling in PC2 and a new optimization model for the wood yard stock management in PC4. The latter is called the YAMS (Yard Management System) and includes a wide range of functionalities related with cork supply chain management and cork traceability. These models are presented in scientific publications in international peer-reviewed journals. In case of PC1 and PC2, WOFS optimization engines are used together with Iptim Graphical User Interfaces. In the other cases, WOFS uses its own GUI.

Work Package 4. Platform prototype implementation and integration
The work led by Azevedos started in 24/06/2014 with the aim to implement FOCUS core as the key interoperability component and then couple the technological solutions developed in WP2 and WP3 into fully functional prototypes that meet the specifications of the pilot cases. The validation of the prototypes takes place in the WP5 but it leads to improvements it the prototypes, therefore leading to an extension of WP4 until the end of the project (30/06/2016).
The Core main components were implemented with the open-source Enterprise Service Bus (ESB) project Zato ( Detailed description of Zato main functionalities and how they match with the FOCUS core requirements are presented in D4.1. Report on FOCUS core.

The FOCUS technological platform for each pilot case was described in detail in the reports D4.3 to D4.6. Its underlying integration architecture is further documented in the report D4.2. As a summary:
a) Components of the FOCUS technological platform for forest hierarchical mngt
Pilot case I addresses forest planning problems under the perspective of the public forest enterprise of the City of Winterthur (Switzerland). The first outcome of the project was the definition of a new vision for combined forest planning and control, covering processes from forest long term strategic planning to operations weekly scheduling and resources assignment. The linkage with the control for real-time supervision was also addressed.
The FOCUS technological platform for hierarchical planning is composed by the forest data collection App. (MOTI), WIS.2 IPTIM and WOFS, with an integrated local forest growth model (SiWaWa), FOCUS core and FOCUS mobile. Specifically, the new planning process starts with strategic planning, performed in Iptim, SiWaWa and WIS 2.0. Strategic planning is done typically once a year, using up-to-date forest inventory data collected with MOTI app. The goal is to schedule forest operations along the next decades. This plan is verified in the field. Foresters use the FOCUS Mobile app on-site to consult and edit the plan. Afterwards, the hierarchical planning process proceeds with a manual operation of marking the trees that should be harvested in the next year. Tree marking is registered in the client ERP (in this case WinForst Pro) and an estimate of the available volume per stand is given. Next, the planners use WOFS-Iptim for scheduling harvesting operations at the monthly level, taking into account the available teams and machinery and their productivity in the harvest stands. The plan is distributed to the teams using FOCUS Mobile app to support operations execution. Information about the progress of operations (actual productivity, wood flows per type of assortment) is recorded periodically in the client ERP. In the end of each week, this information is sent to the WOFS controller to compute deviations in respect to the plan. If deviations are significant, the planner may trigger replanning of harvest scheduling and team assignment. Information about the status and the new plan is shared with all stakeholders using the FOCUS Mobile app.

b) Components of the FOCUS technological platform for biomass supply chain
Pilot Case 2 - Finland addresses the delivery of wood chips from forest harvest areas to power plants for combined generation of heat and electricity. A single company, Hakevuori Oy, operates the supply chain. The goal of the development was to help to maximize the net profit for the delivery company targeting two main factors; (i) maximize the revenue by optimizing the moisture content of the woodchips delivered and (ii) minimize the operating cost by optimizing the allocation of resources to delivery tasks, and minimizing the time needed to react to disturbances in the execution of the allocated tasks.
The software components of the FOCUS technological platform for biomass delivery planning are WOFS-Iptim, the model predictive controller and FOCUS core, as described in detail in D4.3. Specifically, WOFS/Iptim Tactical planning system, implemented by Simosol and InescP, relies on a mixed integer linear programming optimization model (MIP) to plan the distribution of wood chips from forest areas to the power plants. WOFS/Iptim Operational planning system, by InescP, also uses a MIP to optimally schedule the daily chipping and transportation of wood chips at the forest sites, taking into account synchronization constraints. The model predictive controller, by InescP, relies on a discrete event simulation model to supervise the daily chipping and transportation operations.
The sensor components applied in the pilot case 2 come from two different categories. The tactical planning needs information about the moisture content development of the harvest residue piles in the forest. This is predicted utilizing drying models for woody material, and the meteorological data from the Finnish Meteorological Institute. The model predictive control solution requires event data about the individual work assignments in the supply chain, e.g. beginning and end of chipping of a harvest residue pile and loading and unloading the container trucks used to transport the wood chips to the power plants. These events are generated with the sensor solution developed within the project by Simosol.
Pilot case 2 - Belgium considers the supply and management of poplar wood to the Sappi paper mill located in the town of Lanaken in the province of Limburg. For their wood (logs and chips), Sappi relies exclusively on the company Sapin, a joint venture between Sappi and Norske Skog. The goal of the development was to determine the long term availability of poplar raw material for the Lanaken paper mill, and the optimal allocation of raw material between the paper mill and the sawmills.
The FOCUS technological platform for biomass strategic supply chain planning encompasses OPTIMASS and its integration with Iptim. The work done by Simosol and KU Leuven further encompasses the validation of the proposed FOCUS platform in a close-to-reality situation at both companies. For this purpose, the companies provided their current strategic plans and schedules. This information was used to run the proposed systems and generate new plans and schedules which were compared with the existing ones. As before, the results suggest significant that the proposed FOCUS approach is valuable for gaining insight into the long term raw material procurement outlook, as showed in assessment (WP5).

c) Components of the FOCUS technological platform for forest harvesting and wood transportation
Pilot Case 3 – Germany aims to monitor and control operations forest operations up to stocking the wood at the road side, under the perspective of the forest contractor in Germany (here represented by FBZNRW). The FOCUS technological platform for forest harvesting is mainly composed by sensors and similar technologies embedded in existing harvesters and forwarders produced by Whalers. Other components include the FOCUS core, FOCUS mobile and iFOS constitute the software layer for data processing. Specifically, new developments in harvesting and forwarding machinery enable to collect CAN-Bus/iFOS data, GPS-positions, sensor data, polterluchs and TimeControl data. The novel OGC Sensor Observation Service server is used to communicate information to the FOCUS core. iFOS consolidates the CAN-Bus data. The FOCUS mobile, by BFH, display up-to-date information for monitoring operations.
Pilot Case 3 – Austria aims to monitor and control wood transportation operations from the road side up to the mill, under the perspective of a transportation company (here represented by HC-STMK and the external use case partner Meyr-Melnhof). The FOCUS technological platform for wood transportation is mainly composed by sensors and similar technologies that collect data from wood trucks. The developed solution leverages on cost effective smartphones and their internal sensors to collect the desired information that are needed for FOCUS. The smartphone therefore only has to be put in the trucks cockpit and the app has to be started. For a full day period no further interaction by the truck driver is needed, which minimizes work distraction. This approach allows the provision of (near) real-time sensor information in a harmonized manner in a custom FOCUS web-map dashboard without mechanically adapting the truck. It is now possible to collect and visualize (Figure 10) following pilot case requirement parameters: Position, time, speed, truck status (stopped /driving), log loading status and as human sensor inputs which require truck driver interaction ‘(log) unloading’ and proposed ‘delay time’. These sensor measurements of vehicles are now converted into standardized FOCUS core data standards and used by the software layer. The latter is mainly composed by several geofence applications (Figure 6). One dedicated to ‘unloading areas’ and one dedicated to a ‘10min drive time geofence to the next sawmill’. The Geofences can be maintained using a Web-Map-editing solution.
The proposed prototypes of the FOCUS technological platform are extensively tested with end-users. The harvesting solution was tested into 3 test bed locations: 1) Arnsberg, Germany (partner FBZ NRW); 2) Harvesting company in Cantone Lucerne, Switzerland, not partner of the project; 3) Harvesting company in Northern Germany. While the wood truck solution was tested by the end-user partner Mayr-Melnhof and Holzcluster Steiermark. Test results were reported in the scope of WP5.

d) Components of the FOCUS technological platform for the cork supply chain
Pilot Case 4 addresses the cork supply chain in Portugal under the perspective of a corkstoppers manufacturing industry WFS. The emphasis is no enhancing cork traceability across the production process and reduction of the cork production lead time though improvements in the industrial equipment, planning and control processes. For this purpose, LEAN techniques are firstly used to study the industrial production process. The main bottlenecks are operations related with the cork stock yard management, cork debarking and drying. The FOCUS technological platform for this case includes a new software Yard Management System (YAMS), humidity sensors for cork plank drying monitoring, the FOCUS core and prototypes of 2 new cork processing equipment - Cork Debarking Machine and Cork stoppers Drying Chamber – both with embedded RFID readers that identify the wireless RFID tags placed in the cork batches, as described in report D4.6.
Specifically, YAMS, developed by INESCP, manages information about cork acquisitions, cork storage and cork stoppers production. It links to sensors and industrial equipment to enable monitoring real-time production flows and supporting decisions regarding the management of the cork stockyard.
The Wireless RFID sensors were installed into cork plank piles at the cork stockyard at WFS. The sensors measure the humidity and temperature for estimating the drying state of the cork planks. As the cork material dries moisture is evapored from the planks which increases the humidity in the air inside the pile between the cork planks. In principle, the dryness of the cork planks can be estimated by comparing the relative humidity inside the piles to the outside air humidity – when the planks are dry there is very little evaporation of moisture into the air and the humidity inside the pile should follow the outside air humidity. It should be noted that the changes in the outside weather, wind and rain particularly, affect the humidity inside the piles, which complicates the evaluation of the cork plank drying state. Nevertheless, despite these challenges the concept is attractive to be investigated at the stock yard at WFS as the sensors are inexpensive and easy to install inside the piles when they are made.
The machinery prototypes were developed by Azevedos. The prototype of the new cork debarking machine aims to remove the bark from the cork planks in an optimal way. As described in deliverable D2.5 Azevedos worked with VTT to develop a specific scanner to acquire each cork plank profile. This profile then will be used to adapt the movement executed by the abrasive tools responsible for bark removing. VTT developed also a routine under Matlab to process the data acquired by the laser scanner and then to send it to an automat, which will then be send that data to the abrasive tools implemented in the prototype of the cork debarking. The prototype of the new Cork stoppers Drying Chamber aims to to reduce cork stoppers production lead time, by adjusting the drying time to the specific moisture conditions of the cork stoppers. Nowadays, this specific activity takes around 12 hours under uncontrolled conditions and with high energy losses. The work done by Azevedos, WFS, and InescP for the development of this machine is described in D2.5. Several drying technologies were tested in laboratory close to the conditions of the WFS production process. A MPC to control critical parameters (cork stoppers moisture, air moisture level, air temperature, layers speed, etc.). Results suggest that the drying chamber prototype, allows some specific gains, such as: Reduces the cork stoppers drying lead time from 12 hours, to approximately 3,5 hours which is a productivity gain around 70%; New prototype will be easily integrated on a flow line avoiding high work-in-progress; Reduces energy losses at least 30%;

Work Package 5. Assessment in Pilot cases
WP5 (from 01/11/2015 to 30/06/2016, led by HC-STMK), aims to design and implement a thorough assessment of the advantages, gains and difficulties of using the proposed FOCUS technological platforms in each pilot case.
The first outcome is the definition of the set of Key Performance Indicators to be used in each pilot case. The work led by RSA-iSPACE encompassed a detailed survey on the key performance indicators, based on the literature review and discussion with FOCUS partners and external stakeholders. The final list of KPIs includes FOCUS user centered KPIs and service KPIs that were assessed in all pilot cases as well as case-specific KPIs that were suggested by partners and stakeholders, as described in D5.1.
• FOCUS user centered KPIs for evaluating the performance with regard “effectiveness”, and “satisfaction” by e.g. measuring user experience, user satisfaction, system costs etc. These KPIs should be assessed by end-user partners and external stakeholders involved in the pilot cases. Include: self-descriptiveness, completeness, usability, security and content maintainability.
• FOCUS service KPIs for evaluating the FOCUS system architecture and framework component implementations with regard to e.g. implementation quality, reliability, security, use of standards etc. The FOCUS service KPIs are internal KPIs that are measured by each partner, but are not communicated externally. Include: completeness, software reliability, security, performance, structuredness, consistency, accuracy and use of standards.
Then the method for assessing the KPIs was established by KU Leuven, which was also responsible for analysing the results. As described in D5.2. the KPI assessment consists of questionnaires implemented in google forms. There is one questionnaire per pilot case covering the FOCUS service KPI’s and another one covering the User-centered KPI’s. Every KPI is followed by a comment field where the respondents are supposed to provide explanations for extreme values. The number of respondents varied between 2 (for PC2) and 8 (for PC4). Questionnaires were repeated every month (from February to June) and the intermediate replies were discussed with the partners for continuous improvement of the prototypes.
The detailed results are discussed in report D5.3.. The average scores fluctuate between three and four for all the pilot cases. These scores indicate that the tools developed in the pilot cases have a clear added value. Some tools allowed for reductions in time, while the availability of more data facilitates decision making. The FOCUS tools allow for the quick development of optimized plans that entail economic gains and possible sustainability benefits, such as carbon sequestration. Yet no pilot case reached a maximum score. The original assumption that the KPIs will converge and reach a final maximum score of five is valid for completed systems. As the FOCUS tools were still on prototype level, fulfilling these assumptions is not evident. The summaries repeatedly mention that integration and development of GUI is ongoing, and that further testing is necessary.

Work Package 6. Dissemination and training
WP6 started earlier than planned (01/03/2014) and extended up to the end of the project. The work led by FBZNRW training center aims at communicating and disseminating the FOCUS project strategy, action plan, results and impact both internally among the project members and externally for the science community, general public. Target audience includes SMEs in the forest related industry (forest machinery, forest information systems, forest associations, pulp and paper, haulage industry), but also policy makers, scientific community and the European society.
The dissemination strategy and main dissemination actions are foreseen in the dissemination plan, means and tools (Deliverable D6.1 submitted in 30/08/2014). Main actions include: the project web site FOCUSnet (on-line since the beginning of the project); 25 presentations in 21 international events and meetings, 3 newsletters, 10 peer-reviewed publications, thus extending the knowledge in precision forestry, sensing and automation. Partners guided 10 Master and 2 PhD students towards a project-related dissertation. Furthermore, 3 workshops were organized for end-users. 2 training courses were held in the Arnsberg forest training center and at BFH headquarters in Zollikofen. 12 Podcasts for wider dissemination are available at FOCUSnet.
Exploitation actions were led by the SME partner HS-CTMK that took the responsibility of exploitation manager during the whole project. Main actions include the organization of 3 workshops with external experts (Exploitation Strategy Seminar, Leuven, 03/12/2014; Business modeling techniques, Espoo, 28/05/2015; Business cases definition, Bern, 03/11/2015). These seminars were instrumental for identifying 21 exploitable results and clarifying IPR and interests of each partner towards these results. A final set of 6 business cases were drawn to take the FOCUS solutions to the marketplace. The Plan to Use and Disseminate Project Results was updated once a year in order to reflect the progress of exploitation actions (version 1: 31/12/2014, version 2: 31/12/2015, version due to 31/06/2016).

Work Package 7. Project management, quality assurance and reporting
The work in WP7 proceeded as planned during the entire project. The project management procedures and quality plan were established during the kick-off (deliverable D7.1). Project management tools, updated project work plan and risk contingency plans were defined in D7.2. and are periodically updated. Simplified progress reports are produced every 6-months as planned. 6 General Assemblies were organized. The Advisory panel was set in place and met with the consortium to provide guidance and suggestions on work progress. Remote Bi-monthly meetings with WP leaders and Pilot case leaders were set into practice and the meeting minutes are available in

Potential Impact:
Socio-economical impact and wider societal implications of the project so far:
The assessment of the project results by the stakeholders involved in the pilot cases suggests that indeed the solutions can contribute to improve the processes across the forest-based supply chains in all the dimensions foreseen in the Call. Specifically,
a) Improving productivity
FOCUS results showed that planning processes become easier and planners can save time and do better decisions. Operations efficiency is also increased and the machinery and teams are better managed, as shown in cases 1 to 3. FOCUS also showed that the synchronization of biomass chipping and transportation is possible, with significant reduction of waiting times and machinery deadhead times.
b) Improving sustainability
Wood transportation is now monitored remotely. Less trucks can do more work, impacting in the reduction of carbon footprint, as shown in cases 2 and 3.
c) Increased quality and marketability of timber and bio-energy products and biomaterials
Cork natural resources are now better managed, since the beginning of its industrial transformation can be determined based on the estimates of its moisture content, as shown in case 4. Similarly, FOCUS showed that the distribution of biomass to bio-energy centrals can be done acknowledging the biomass moisture content and the distinct requirements of the centrals therefore improving its overall return.
d) World-leading position for the European forestry machinery industry
The companies involved in the FOCUS project engaged in 6 new business cases, establishing new collaborations between companies and with RTD. Two new H2020 proposals were already submitted, pushing forward the results of the FOCUS project.
The open-sourced components (such as the FOCUS core) have the potential to benefit other companies outside the consortia, which can use them to enhance their machinery and software products for the forest sector and beyond.
e) Benefits for the society and the development of European rural areas.
FOCUS results were presented in several conferences and seminars world-wide and numerous publications, therefore contributing to the advance of knowledge in several domains, including control and automation, sensors and similar technologies, information management, hardware and software integration, and forest engineering. Several Master and PhD thesis were also produced. At the political level, FOCUS was important to show concrete examples of the application of INDUSTRY 4.0 in the forest sector. It was recognized as a pioneer project in the forefront of uprising initiatives such as the Wald und Holz 4.0. Several country-level projects are being prepared to test widely the use of FOCUS solutions in local conditions.

Main dissemination activities:
Dissemination activities were led by FBZNRW training center according to the Communication and dissemination plan, means and tools (Deliverable D6.1 submitted in 30/08/2014). Including:
a) Project web site FOCUSnet ( described in report D6.2).
This is the unique repository of data for the entire project. The structure of the report was elaborated by INESC P and BFH in the report D6.2. although the content of the FOCUSnet is continuously updated. The project public area has general project information (About FOCUS), Public news and events and contacts. The internal area has information for managing the project (Project Management), organizing the work and project reports (Work plan, Deliverables), organizing the work of General Assembly and SME committee, disseminating information to the User Groups and further managing knowledge in respect to forest planning and control (Resources). A new release of the website was done in March 2016 with enhanced graphics and a new design to better show the results attained in the pilot cases.
b) Project dissemination material
The project leaflet was created in the beginning of the project. Several posters were also produced and posted at the FOCUS partners headquarters.

c) Newsletter and press releases
FBZNRW was responsible for publishing 3 newsletters. The first (in 31/12/2015) presented an Overview of the project, Overview of sensor and similar solutions for plan and control forest operations. The second (in 15/04/2015) had the Pilot cases description and the composition of the FOCUS platform for each pilot case. The final (in 30/06/2016) presented the project final results. A final press release was prepared in August 2016.

d) Conferences, Industrial Dissemination at Tradeshows and Fairs
The partners have presented the project objectives and results in 14 international events (7 during the first half of the project). The number of participations in events, as listed in table A2, is 27.
The highlights for dissemination from the scientific point of view is the participation in the SSAFR2015 16th Symposium for Systems Analysis in Forest Resources, 21/08/2015, Uppsala, Sweden. This is an international conference held every 2 years about technologies for the forest sector. The conference of 2015 was structured into 9 topics, one of which was “Planning and control systems for the forest-based supply chains”, proposed by the FOCUS consortium. This topic was the most participated of the conference, with a total of 14 presentations. 7 presentations were done by members of the project. One member of the FOCUS project was in the scientific committee.
In respect to business and industrial dissemination, the most important event was the Ligna Fair, held in Hannover 11-15/05/2015. This is the leading trade fair for the wood and forestry industries, addressing trends in the wood and forest industries on European and international level, as well as chances for the set-up of international cooperation along the wood value chain with potential partners and users of FOCUS-technology. In 2015 the fair has reinforced its position as Europe’s leading meeting-place for this sector. This was underlined by the response of 1’637 satisfied exhibitors from 46 countries. The 90’000 trade visitors benefited from the various displays of high-tech, occupying a total area of 124’000 m². More than 40 percent of the trade visitors came from outside Germany. The partners involved in PC3 prepared a life demonstrator and complementary videos that were displayed during this event. The same infrastructure will be re-used in the FOCUS closing event and for training courses.

e) Organization of conferences and meetings
The work in the pilot cases required tens of workshops and meetings with the stakeholders involved in the pilot cases. Besides that, the Consortium organized 3 workshops with stakeholders and members of the FOCUS end-users group, including:
• FOCUS stakeholders meeting in Portugal, 31/01/2016, Porto, presented in the M15 meeting
• AIFF workshop on forest operations, 05/11/2015, Santa Maria da Feira, Portugal
• Forest Owner Day (“Waldbauerntag”), Naturarena Pöllauberg, 12/11/2015

f) Publications in industrial magazines and scientific journals
Up to this date, the members of the project produced 10 peer-reviewed publications (see table A1). Main scientific journals include: Renewable & Sustainable Energy Reviews, Environmental Modelling & Software and Forest Systems. Efforts are on the way to produce at least 8 new publications with the results of the pilot cases assessment. However, the publications will be known after the end of the project due to the long reviewing process.

g) Academic thesis
A total of 10 Master thesises and 2 PhD thesises related to themes addressed by the FOCUS-project were supervised by its members.

h) PodCasts
12 short media videos (2-5 minutes) were prepared by the partners for wider dissemination. These videos present the main features of the FOCUS solutions, targeting both the end-users and IT companies/machinery developers (Technology up-takers).

i) Training courses
Training methodologies and didactic material was created by FBZNRW and reported in D6.63. One of them outcomes was the demonstrator to use in pilot case 3 in order to show complex contents to users and public in a simple way. The first Training courses of the FOCUS project were held in April 2016 in Arnsberg and in Zollikofen. A total of 50 participants in one day sessions.
Furthermore, the training material is used as part of curricula in BFH master study since 2015 (15 students) and Arnsberg trainings courses (90 students).

j) FOCUS closing event
The final event of Focus was held in Arnsberg 21th of June. The goal was to show the FOCUS platform solutions developed for the 4 pilot cases. The main target group are the SMEs technology up takers with existing business in the forestry sector, and the forest companies that may be end-users of these solutions. However, forest practitioners, researchers and students may also take part in the meeting. A list of potential participants was prepared by the partners and Invitations were sent directly to this invitation list. Wider event dissemination was also done through the national forest associations and international networks, such as the The number of participants was around 30.

Exploitation actions:
Exploitation actions started at the beginning of the project with the main purpose to identify exploitable results and clarify IPR rights among the partners. Close to the midle of the project, the SME partner HC-STMK took the responsibility of exploitation manager, as decided in a SME committee meeting. The work proceeded with and higher emphasis in for moving from single exploitable results as outlined in the initial PUDF version to marketable solutions underpinned by business cases and guided by external advisory services. Main actions include:

a) 1st Exploitation strategy Seminar
This seminar was presented and moderated by Mr. Gosse Hiemstra, Leuven meeting, 03/12/2014. The main outcome was the 1st version of the PUDF, listing 21 exploitable results.

b) Internal workshop Introduction to business modelling
This Internal workshop providing an introduction to business modelling, internal workshop presented and moderated by Mr. Américo Azevedo, INESCP, took place in Helsinki Meeting, 27/5/2015. The purpose of the workshop was to make the partners familiar with business plan writing and the questions to consider when it comes to the commercialization of the FOCUS elements. In order to allow a structured approach the tools “Business Model Canvas” and “Value Proposition Canvas” were discussed and applied in three parallel sessions.
c) 2nd Business Exploitation Seminar
The 2nd Business Exploitation Seminar focused on business case writing, was moderated Mr. Lars Iverson, Springfellow AB, took place in Zollikofen Meeting, 4/11/2015. Prior to the seminar the consortium discussed and agreed in a number of video conferences a short list of FOCUS solutions suitable for business cases. The FOCUS business cases comprise commercialization of the ICT solutions developed within the pilot cases and the FOCUS core platform providing an open integration framework for existing and upcoming ICT solutions. By that all exploitable results outlined in the previous PUDF are integrated into business cases. The detailed description of the business cases was progressively improved and published in the 2nd and 3rd versions of the PUDF.

d) Internal workshop for business cases discussion
A final workshop for business cases discussion was moderated by the exploitation manager Mr. Roland Oberwimmer. It took place in the Arnsberg Meeting, 22/06/2016. The consortium agreed upon the final content of the Table B2: Exploitable foreground” as requested in this report and also the table on FOCUS exploitable results with time to market and IPR related information. Both matrix are presented in the final version of the PUDF.
e) PodCasts
The PodCasts are key to support further exploitation and to propel market uptake of the FOCUS partners. The target groups of these video sequences are forest practitioners with little to no IT background. In the podcasts actual challenges in forest supply chains are outlined and the added value of the developed FOCUS solutions conveyed in simple, yet clear messages and animated visuals.

f) Gitbub online repository
The open source components of the FOCUS solutions have been released on GitHub, a web-based system. The software code is publicly accessible and can be re-used on an “as-is” basis meaning that only the code is provided but no further support or services. Furthermore the consortium is not liable for any use or misuse of the software according to the end-user agreement of GITHUB (

List of Websites: