MSc thesis subject: Repeatability of above ground biomass retrievals with Terrestrial Laser Scanning and Quantitative Structural Models

In recent years Terrestrial Laser Scanning (TLS) has been given much attention for its capability to estimate forest Above-Ground Biomass (AGB). Typically point clouds from several scan positions are combined to capture a forest scene. Then single trees are extracted from these point clouds and Quantitative Structural Models are used to fit geometrical primitives to estimate tree volume. So far the only feasible way of validation is by destructive sampling. However, the precision of the modelling approach to accurate model tree point clouds has not been investigated yet.

The aim of this project is to investigate repeatability of the extraction of biophysical parameters with the QSM approach.


  • Acquire dataset with repeated TLS scans/check datasets available at GRS.
  • Extract trees from point clouds and apply QSMs to derive biophysical parameters.
  • Compare derived parameters.


  • Raumonen, P., Casella, E., Calders, K., Murphy, S., Åkerblom, M., Kaasalainen, M., … Kaasalainen, M. (2015). MASSIVE-SCALE TREE MODELLING FROM TLS DATA. ISPRS Annals of Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences, II-3/W4(March), 189–196. doi:10.5194/isprsannals-II-3-W4-189-2015
  • Raumonen, P., Kaasalainen, M., Åkerblom, M., Kaasalainen, S., Kaartinen, H., Vastaranta, M., … Lewis, P. (2013). Fast Automatic Precision Tree Models from Terrestrial Laser Scanner Data. Remote Sensing, 5(2), 491–520. doi:10.3390/rs5020491
  • Calders, K., Newnham, G., Herold, M., Murphy, S., Culvenor, D., Raumonen, P., … Disney, M. (2013). Estimating above ground biomass from terrestrial laser scanning in Australian Eucalypt Open Forest. Silvilaser 2013, October 9-11, Beijing, China, di(July 2015), 90–97.


  • Scripting skills (e.g. R, Python, MatLab) are a preference
  • Completion GRS-32306 Advanced Earth Observation

Theme(s): Sensing & measuring