Estimating stem volume and biomass of Pinus koraiensis using LiDAR data

Doo Ahn Kwak, Woo Kyun Lee, Hyun Kook Cho, Seung Ho Lee, Yowhan Son, Menas Kafatos, So Ra Kim

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

43 Citations (Scopus)


The objective of this study was to estimate the stem volume and biomass of individual trees using the crown geometric volume (CGV), which was extracted from small-footprint light detection and ranging (LiDAR) data. Attempts were made to analyze the stem volume and biomass of Korean Pine stands (Pinus koraiensis Sieb. et Zucc.) for three classes of tree density: low (240 N/ha), medium (370 N/ha), and high (1,340 N/ha). To delineate individual trees, extended maxima transformation and watershed segmentation of image processing methods were applied, as in one of our previous studies. As the next step, the crown base height (CBH) of individual trees has to be determined; information for this was found in the LiDAR point cloud data using k-means clustering. The LiDAR-derived CGV and stem volume can be estimated on the basis of the proportional relationship between the CGV and stem volume. As a result, low tree-density plots had the best performance for LiDAR-derived CBH, CGV, and stem volume (R2 = 0.67, 0.57, and 0.68, respectively) and accuracy was lowest for high tree-density plots (R2 = 0.48, 0.36, and 0.44, respectively). In the case of medium tree-density plots accuracy was R2 = 0.51, 0.52, and 0.62, respectively. The LiDAR-derived stem biomass can be predicted from the stem volume using the wood basic density of coniferous trees (0.48 g/cm3), and the LiDAR-derived above-ground biomass can then be estimated from the stem volume using the biomass conversion and expansion factors (BCEF, 1.29) proposed by the Korea Forest Research Institute (KFRI).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)421-432
Number of pages12
JournalJournal of Plant Research
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - 2010

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgment This study was carried out with the support of ‘‘Forest Science and Technology Projects (Project No. S120909L010130)’’ provided by Korea Forest Service.


  • Above-ground biomass
  • Crown base height
  • Crown geometric volume
  • K-means clustering
  • LiDAR
  • Stem volume

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Plant Science


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