From the Volumetric Algorithm for Single-Tree Delineation Towards a Fully-Automated Process for the Generation of “Virtual Forests”

  • Arno BueckenEmail author
  • Juergen Rossmann
Part of the Lecture Notes in Geoinformation and Cartography book series (LNGC)


When we introduced the volumetric algorithm for single-tree delineation at the 3D GeoInfo 07, it was already a powerful algorithm with a high detection rate and the capability to generate trees for forestry units with only minimal user interaction. For the first test-area of 82 km2 this was acceptable, but as the test-areas grew, it showed that even the little user interaction does make the process laborious and strenuous. For currently envisaged test-areas of more than 1,000 km2, it is essential to further limit the required user interaction. In this paper we will show how to reduce the computational complexity of the volumetric algorithm and how to automatically calculate the free parameter that had to be set interactively in the earlier implementation. We will use the so called Receiver Operator Characteristic (ROC), an approach that is being used to model and imitate the human decision process when it comes to making a parameter decision in statistical processes. It turns out that this method, which is commonly used in other fields of scientific decision making, is also valuable for many other geo-information processes.


Remote sensing LIDAR Single tree delineation Forest 3D modeling 



The project “Virtual Forest” is co-financed by the European Union and North-Rhine-Westphalia—European Regional Development Fund (EFRE)


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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Institute for Man-Machine InteractionRWTH Aachen UniversityAachenGermany

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