Scanning wood samples for density has applications in paleo-climatological research, forestry, phyto forensics and environmental research. Many species of wood has the great advantage of having a distinct chronology, making them useful for some applications that need temporal information. For example, the maximum density of each year ring in oak and pine is the proxy that shows the best correlation to summer temperature. It offers higher correlation than the traditional year ring width measurements, but also better temperature correlation than isotope analysis etc. It has been shown that good climate reconstructions can be done also on wood grown away from the timber line (Helama et. al. See Articles for full reference).
Photo: Sequoia National Forest, CA, USA.
In this photo, a pine lath placed in the Multiscanner sample holder is shown in colour on a black background. Overlaid on that is the density image in greyscale, with the Ca profile of that sample overlaid in blue. The images and data were collected with the Multiscanner. The scan spotsize and stepsize was 50 micrometers.