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Leaf orientation measurement in a mixed hemiboreal broadleaf forest stand using terrestrial laser scanner

  • Andres KuuskEmail author
Original Article


Orientation of leaves in a mature hemiboreal mixed broadleaf stand (the Järvselja RAMI birch stand) was measured using the high-density point cloud of terrestrial laser scanner hits. Leaf normal distribution in the upper part of crowns of tall aspen and birch trees is almost spherical, and slightly planophile in the lower part of crowns. Leaves of alder trees are rather planophile in the upper part of crowns, and strongly planophile in the lower part of crowns. Lime and maple trees form the lower layer of trees in the stand. Their crowns are mainly in shade, and therefore, their leaf orientation is strongly planophile throughout the whole crown. Parameters of beta distribution and elliptical distribution are provided for the approximation of empirical distributions. The acquired information about leaf orientation can improve performance assessment of radiative transfer models.


Terrestrial laser scanner Foliage orientation Broadleaf forest 



This study was made possible by funding support from the Estonian Research Council, as project SF0180009Bs11, under Grants PUT232, PUT1355, and Mobilitas Pluss MOBERC-11. I am very grateful to colleagues Drs Silja Märdla, Mait Lang, and Jan Pisek for collecting data and discussing the manuscript. I would like to thank the Government of Estonian for continuously keeping up our hopes about raising research funding to 1% of GDP.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The author declares that he has no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag GmbH Germany, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Tartu Observatory, Faculty of Science and TechnologyUniversity of TartuTõravereEstonia

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