Training School QWA

Venue and date: Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL, Birmensdorf, Switzerland: 18-21 November 2014

Organizers: Georg von Arx (WSL, Switzerland), Katarina Cufar (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia), Alan Crivellaro & Marco Carrer (Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy)

The COST Action STReESS organized a training school on quantitative wood anatomy from 18 to 21 November 2014, which was hosted and supported by the Swiss Federal Institute for Forest, Snow and Landscape Research WSL, Birmensdorf, Switzerland. The experts Prof. Dr. Katarina Čufar (University of Ljubljana, Slovenia), Dr. Alan Crivellaro (Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy), Dr. Marco Carrer (Università degli Studi di Padova, Italy) and Dr. Georg von Arx (WSL, Switzerland) introduced to up-to-date theoretical background and practical aspects of extracting high-quality anatomical data from anatomical samples. Nineteen early stage researchers of the COST Action attended the training school. They were selected from more than forty applicants representing eleven countries.

The focus was on anatomical measurements related to conduits (lumen dimensions, cell wall thickness, vessel topology), since they are most commonly used in research, but also the quantification of other anatomical structures was touched. Based on ready anatomical samples, the training school run through all processing and analysis steps until primary and secondary data are produced. This included the topics:

•    Anatomical traits:
•    Commonly measured anatomical traits and their meaning
•    Secondary anatomical metrics and less common anatomical features
•    Creating digital images of anatomical samples:
•    Different image acquisition techniques using microscopes and flatbed scanners
•    Creating distortion-free, high-resolution images of entire anatomical samples using panorama stitching tools
•    Frequent sample and image deficiencies, and ways to avoid and correct them
•    General concepts of quantitative image analysis
•    introduction to the image analysis tools ImageJ, WinCELL and ROXAS
•    Hands-on training with own and provided samples


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