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November/December | Muedanyi Ramantswana

BraSatt 01 planting machine - testing and progressing

Tree Planting


Investments and developments into silviculture technology solutions (especially regeneration activities) are evident globally. In November/December 2021, Forsilvitech first reported on the BraSatt project which had commenced in the Spring of 2020. The BraSatt project is a forestry modernization initiative spearheaded by Södra with the goal of developing new forest technology for soil preparation and planting. To accomplish this Södra has collaborated with companies with experience from various industries to find new solutions. The participating companies are Axelent Engineering, Bit Addict, Boid,Chalmers, CIT, DB MakerLab, Ebeaver, LUE Engineering and the Forestry Research Institute of Sweden. As of today, this new regeneration technology has now been tested with promising results.

How the machine operates?
According to the project manager Anna Wallner, the BraSatt 01 comprises of a new scarification method, and it is a self-propelled planting machine with several robotic features which have been integrated into the machine. The new scarification method is said to create an environment that is optimal for the seedling growth and energy-efficient, while also leaving a relatively even clearing behind. The current autonomous planting version, which is being tested was derived from the BraSatt 01 prototype. This machine aims at achieving the following in a systematic and efficient manner:
1. Follow an overall route/path,
2. Identify an accessible path through the terrain,
3. Choose a good planting spot,
4. Feed and supply the seedlings through the system,
5. Scarify the soil,
6. Plant the seedling in the prepared spot.

From observations of the machine, it looks advance and styled in a futuristic manner. One can note the machine looks relatively smaller in size than convention forwarder-based planting machine carriers, it is eight wheeled, has no operator sitting in the cab, the machine plants a single seedling at a time and has a seedling storage compartment for easy replenishing.

Next steps for the BraSatt
According to Anna Wallner “Even though the test results are promising, the machine is not ready for use. What we want to show with this development is that this is possible to achieve. In the next step, we need to decide what parts of the development that we need to prioritise and run ourselves here at Södra, wherewe can find partners and where there are technical advances happening that we don’t need to push,”

This is indeed an exciting project and Forsilvitech looks forward to the significant progression of this machine within the silviculture technology space.

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