2021 COFE/FORMEC Annual Meeting

COFE-FORMEC 2021 Joint Virtual Meeting
Forest Engineering Family – Growing Forward Together
September 27-30, 2021


Registration is now open for The Council on Forest Engineering (COFE) and the International Symposium on Forest Mechanization (FORMEC) joint annual meeting in September 2021.

This virtual meeting will bring together forest engineering researchers, industry experts, government agencies and academics from around the globe and provide an online platform for participants to present, share and discuss the latest forest engineering research and technology development.

Participants will have access to 160+ presentations from 30+ countries to watch on-demand and daily live networking and Q&A sessions

The 2021 joint meeting follows the historic first and in-person joint meeting held in Hungary/Austria in 2019. This year’s joint meeting will be held virtually, and prior to the third COFE/FORMEC joint meeting to be held in-person in Corvallis, Oregon, September 2022. The IUFRO All-Division 3 and Doctoral Conferences will be held in-person alongside the 2022 joint meeting.

The event theme, ‘Forest Engineering Family – Growing Forward Together’, will guide us in building One Big Family of Forest Engineering across continents and sectors. Together, we will learn from the legacy of previous generations, tackle present forest engineering challenges, map our future, and empower our next generations.

Conference Organizers: Oregon State University | BOKU Universitat fur Bodenkultur Wien   Sponsors:  IUFRO

“Reconnecting and Moving Forward”  COFE Southeast annual meeting


Auburn University

August 1 – August 4, 2021 (all times are Central)


Sunday, August 1 – Mary Olive Thomas tract

6:00 – 9:00         Ice-breaker social, spouses welcome


Monday, August 2 – Field trip – departure location to be determined

8:00 am                We will visit three operations, likely a Southern thinning operation, a clearcut operation with a processing head, and a mulching operation that produces biomass.  Box lunch will be provided.  Plan is to return by 5 pm.  Hardhats will be provided.  Supper that evening is on your own.


Tuesday, August 3 – School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences Building on campus

8:00 am              Welcome – Janaki Alavatapati, Dean, School of Forestry and Wildlife Sciences; Tom Gallagher, meeting Chair

8:30 am              Keynote Speaker – Richard Lawler, Director, Forestry Production Systems and Strategy, John Deere - Smart technologies and how they can apply to forest harvesting equipment.


9:30 - 10:00        Break


10:00 – 10:20     Dana Mitchell, Project Leader, US Forest Service, Auburn, AL - Opportunities for acoustic technologies in the wood supply; Mitchell D., M. Smidt, M. Musah and B. Via.   

10:20 – 10:40     Mathew Smidt, Research Engineer, US Forest Service, Auburn - Forestry sector employment, wage and safety data from public sources in the USA.

10:40 – 11:00     Beth Dodson, Professor, University of Montana and Charlie Blinn, Professor, University of Minnesota - Persistent changes to forest operations course instruction post-covid.  

11:00 – 11:20     Patrick Hiesl, Asst. Professor, Clemson - Using case studies as a teaching tool to build leadership skills.

11:20 – 11:40     Manisha Parajuli, Graduate student, Clemson, Patrick Hiesl, Assistant Professor, Clemson, Mathew Smidt, Research Engineer, US Forest Service, Auburn, AL, and Dana Mitchell, Project Leader, US Forest Service, Auburn, AL – Decision support tool for biomass harvesting in forest restoration efforts.

11:40 – 12:00     Arjun Rijal, Graduate student, Auburn - Evaluating the use of unmanned aerial vehicles for assessing forestry best management practices; Arjun Rijal, Richard Cristan and Tom Gallagher.


12:00 – 1:00       Lunch


1:00 – 1:20         Brent Hawks, Graduate student, Virginia Tech - Forestry best management practice implementation and erosion rates by state and regulatory approach in the Southeastern United States; Hawks, B.S., Bolding, M.C., Aust, W.M., Barrett, S.M., and Fielding, J.A.H.

1:20 – 1:40         Austin Garren, Graduate student, Virginia Tech - Evaluating the productivity and costs of five energywood harvesting operations in the lower mid-Atlantic region of the US; Garren, A.M., M.C. Bolding, W.M. Aust, S.M. Barrett, and T.A. Coates

1:40 – 2:00         Luke Chasuk, Graduate student, Auburn – Evaluating the productivity and costs of three energywood harvesting operations in the southeastern region of the US; Luke Chasuk, Tom Gallagher, Richard Cristan, Dana Mitchell, Jo Daniels.

2:00 – 2:20         Libin T. Louis, Graduate student, UMaine - Biomass harvesting amidst market and policy constraints: perspectives of foresters and loggers in the Northeastern United States; Libin T. Louis, Adam Daigneualt, Anil Raj Kizha

2:20 – 2:40         Xufeng Zhang, Graduate student, West Virginia - Quantifying the life cycle impacts of forest logging residue logistics; Xufeng Zhang, Jingxin Wang and John Vance, Center for Sustainable Biomaterials & Bioenergy, West Virginia University. 

2:40 – 3:00         Wanhe Hu, Graduate student, West Virginia - Characterization of forest logging residues for utilization of bioenergy and bioproducts in the Eastern United States; Wanhe Hu, Jingxin Wang, Xufeng Zhang, William Smith and John Vance, Center for Sustainable Biomaterials & Bioenergy, West Virginia University.


3:00 – 3:20         Break – School Conference Hall


3:20 – 3:40         Joe Conrad, Assistant Professor, Georgia - Stakeholder perceptions of potential weight limit increases in Georgia.

3:40 – 4:00         Joe Conrad, Assistant Professor, Georgia  - Comparison of log truck crash rates, severity, and contributing factors before and after weight limit increases in two southern states.

4:00 – 4:20         Alex Ashish, graduate student, UMaine - Small-scale forest operations: Pre-commercial thinning using semi-mechanized harvesting system; Alex Ashish and Anil Raj Kizha

4:20 – 4:40         Ian Snider, Graduate student, Clemson and Patrick Hiesl, Assistant Professor, Clemson - Draft animal logging in Appalachia: The historical roots of Artisan Forestry. 

4:40 - 5:00          James Walker, graduate student, Auburn – Designing a felling head for a wheeled machine to recover downed timber; James Walker, Tom Gallagher, Tim McDonald and Dana Mitchell.

5:00 – 5:20         Hermudananto Hermudananto, graduate student, Florida - Logging practices in Indonesian natural forests.

5:20 – 8:00         Social and dinner – SFWS building, spouses welcome


Wednesday, August 4 – Field trip - departure location to be determined

8:00 am              The plan right now is still fluid but we expect to visit a sawmill, a chipmill and a pole mill.  Box lunch and hardhats will be provided.  For those that need to leave and catch a plane there will be options to break away and get to the airport.  Supper that evening is on your own.

Register Now for 2021 In-Person COFE Annual Meeting in Auburn

The full joint virtual COFE / FORMEC meeting is still planned for September.  However, Auburn will be hosting an in-person meeting from August 1 to 4.  Please click below to register and catch up with COFE colleagues and get up to speed with current research and topics related to forest engineering.  We hope to see you in Auburn, Alabama! 

Check out the full detailed agenda of speakers and events here:  “Reconnecting and Moving Forward”  COFE Southeast annual meeting

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