Forests of the World in 3D
Published:07 Feb.2021    Source:University of G√∂ttingen

The researchers investigated the structure of primeval forests on several continents in different climate zones. To achieve this, they spent two years travelling to remote primeval forest areas around the world to record the structure of the forests with the help of 3D laser scanners. A laser scanner captures the environment with the help of a laser beam and thus builds a 3D representation of the forest. 

This allows important metrics to be calculated to describe the structure. They found that the global variability of forest structures can be explained to a large extent by the amount of precipitation and thus by the availability of water in the different ecosystems. Based on these findings and with the help of climate data, they were able to create maps of the world's forests showing the global variability of structural complexity.