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Center for Advanced Forestry Systems (CAFS)

North Carolina State University

Oregon State University

Purdue University

University of Georgia

University of Idaho

University of Maine

University of Washington

Last Reviewed: 12/13/2019

A National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center since 2007.

The Center for Advanced Forestry Systems is a multi-university center that bridges top forestry research programs with industry members to optimize genetic and cultural systems by conducting collaborative research that transcends species, regions, and disciplinary boundaries.

Center Mission and Rationale

As the world's population and urbanization increase, there is increased pressure to maximize wood production on limited amounts of forested land. To maintain economically viable wood-based industries, it is necessary to develop and incorporate technological advances into forest research.

Built on the strengths of the top forestry research programs in the United States, the CAFS mission is to optimize genetic and cultural systems to produce high-quality raw forest materials for new and existing products by conducting collaborative research that transcends traditional species, regional, and disciplinary boundaries.

CAFS is comprised of nine university sites. CAFS scientists approach research questions on multiple scales, including the molecular, cellular, individual-tree, stand, and ecosystem levels. This effort includes the participation of scientists with expertise in biological sciences (biotechnology, genomics, ecology, physiology, and soils), and management and processing (silviculture, bioinformatics, modeling, remote sensing, and spatial analysis).

Research program

Understanding Site-Specific Factors Affecting the Nutrient Demands and Response to Fertilizer by Douglas-fir

Harrison et al., Lead Site: UW

Development of Genetic Markers for Western White Pine and Douglas-fir

Rust et al., Lead Sites: UI, OSU

Determining phases of growth and relative stand densities for optimal response to thinning

Coleman et al., Lead Site: UI

Linking growth modeling to product quality for loblolly pine

Dahlen et al., Lead Site: UGA

Do Below Ground Processes Explain Differences in Growth, Productivity, and Carrying Capacity of Loblolly Pine Plantation in the Southern United States and Brazil and Black Walnut Plantations in Indiana?

 Fox et al., Lead Sites: VT, PU, NCSU

Production and analysis of flowering-modified eucalypts

Strauss, Lead Site: OSU

Root development and morphological comparisons of container-grown loblolly pine and subsequent productivity after establishment

Enebak and Starkey, Lead Site: AU

Developing a Region-wide Modeling System for Estimating Future Productivity of Loblolly Pine Plantations

Burkhart et al., Lead Site: VT

Classification, projection, and financial impact of beech-dominated understories in mid-rotation

Wagner et al., Lead Site: UMaine

Assessing stand characteristics of enhanced genetics in loblolly pine plantations in the Southeast

Bullock et al., Lead Site: UGA

Appraising Rotation-age Tree and Stand Characteristics in a 1970's Decadal Cohort of Douglas-fir Plantations in the PNW

Turnblom et al., Lead Site: UW

Quantifying the impact of pine decline in the southeastern United States

Eckhardt et al., Lead Site: AU

Does commercial thinning improve the growth response and upper diameter distribution potential of forest stands?

Weiskittel et al., Lead Site: UMaine

Extending the Acadian Variant of the Forest Vegetation Simulator (FVS) to Managed Stands in the Northeast US

Weiskittel et al., Lead Site: UMaine

Impact of genetic gain, weed control and spacing on wood stiffness, density, and knot index in a large-plot trial of Coastal Douglas-fir

Turnblom et al., Lead Site: UW

Development of Genetic Markers for Western White Pine and Douglas-fir

Rust et al., Lead Sites: UI, OSU

Individual-tree response to commercial thinning in northern Maine: Influence of including competition, site, and treatment regime in growth and yield models

Bataineh et al., Lead Site: UMaine

Competing vegetation characterization and assessment in mid-rotation loblolly pine stands for the development of decision support tools

Stape et al., Lead Sites: NCSU, VT

Developing Growth and Yield Predictions for Enhanced Genotypes

Borders et al., Lead Site: UGA

Developing Improved Understanding of Relationships between Stand Response to Thinning and Post-thinning Treatments

Kane et al., Lead Site: UGA

Selection of genetically superior trees for disease resistance as a function of wood chemistry

Eckhardt et al.; Lead Site: AU

Understanding and modeling competition effects on tree growth and stand development across varying forest types and management intensities

Burkhart et al.; Lead Sites: UMaine/UW/VT

Improving White Pine Seedling Survival by Combining Blister Rust Resistance with Defense-enhancing Endophytes

Newcombe et al.; Lead Site: UI

Response of Superior Western Larch Families to Site Quality and Competition Control

Nelson et al.; Lead Site: UI

Stand and Tree Responses to Late Rotation Fertilization

Turnblom et al.; Lead Site: UW

The Rise of Commercially Less Desirable Species in Maine: Identification, Characterization, and Associated Driving Factors

Bose et el.; Lead Site: UMaine

Development of small tree growth and survival equations for the commercially important species in the Acadian Region

Puhlick et al.; Lead Site: UMaine

Modeling the influence of Spruce Budworm on Forest Productivity

Chen et al.; Lead Site: UMaine

Aboveground Nutrient Biomass on LTSP Sites as influenced by Site, Harvest Removals, Weed Control, and Compaction

Turnblom & Littke; Lead Site: UW

Using technology to improve modeling efforts for quantifying genetic gain in loblolly pine plantations

Montes et al.; Lead Site: UGA

Special Activities

The 13th Annual CAFS IAB Meeting will be held June 10-11, 2020 in Snoqualmie, Washington.

Facilities and Laboratory

CAFS brings the country's top forestry research programs together under a structured and supportive partnership, each providing unique research facilities and access to a broad range of forest types.


North Carolina State University

Department of Forestry and Environmental Resources
Campus Box 8008

Raleigh, North Carolina, 27695-8008

United States

Oregon State University

Forest Engineering, Resources & Management
309 Snell Hall

Corvallis, Oregon, 97331-5752

United States

Purdue University

Department of Forestry and Natural Resources
715 W. State St., PFEN Room 221F

West Lafayette, Indiana, 47907

United States


University of Georgia

Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources
Warnell 505 Building 4

Athens, Georgia, 30602-2152

United States


University of Idaho

Department of Forest, Rangeland, and Fire Sciences
875 Perimeter Drive MS 1133, CNR 102A

Moscow, Idaho, 83844-1133

United States

University of Maine

School of Forest Resources
229 Nutting Hall

Orono, Maine, 04469-5755

United States

University of Washington

School of Environmental and Forest Sciences
Box 352100

Seattle, Washington, 98195-2100

United States