Chemical elements are allocated and translocated during the growth process through cambium activity and ring formation as part of tree metabolism and physiology. This process is also regulated by genetic expression, tree age and environmental conditions. The evaluation of anatomical and chemical parameters of tree-rings are therefore currently considered a crucial source of data in tree functioning and proxy of climate records. In the Tropics, analysis of tree-rings (dendrochronology) and construction of long-term chronologies are often precluded by the difficulty of reaching a significant sampling and identifying the annuity of the rings. Furthermore, analysis of chemical features of annually resolved rings (dendrochemistry) is scarce due to the lack of knowledge of analytical methods, instruments, and functionality and characteristics of elements in tropical trees. Thus, the aims of this project are: i) Perform a non-destructive method for Dendrochemistry study by applying X-ray fluorescence (XRF) microanalysis to wood samples of long-live tropical trees; ii) determine the intra- and inter-annual elements distribution and investigate their functionality in tree growth process; iii) built annually long-term chronologies of chemical elements to complement ring-width and density data in climate sensitivity analysis. For this purpose, we will use a high resolution XRF multiscanner, Itrax, designed for the analysis and data processing of wood samples. This proposal is a collaboration with the Assistant Professor Dr. Raúl Sánchez-Salguero and the postdoctoral researcher Dra. Andrea Hevia Cabal in Department of Physical, Chemical and Natural Systems of Universidad Pablo de Olavide (Sevilla, Spain).
News published in Agência FAPESP Newsletter about the scholarship: