The potential for growth strain measurements for detection of tension wood was assessed in trees
from two plantations of 10- to 11-year-old Eucalyptus globulus. Tension wood had commonly developed
at or near the stem periphery of straight, vertical and dominant trees. At a localized level
growth strain was found to be a good indicator of tension wood. However, in some cases moderate
to low growth strain was also detected in some trees where tension wood had been overgrown with
small amounts of normal wood. On a whole tree basis the relationship was not as clear. In this case
growth strain values determined from multiple measurements appear to be influenced primarily
by tissue close to the site of measurements and not by wood at relatively remote locations. In some
cases low growth strain values were found in trees with significant tension wood and in others high
growth strain values where little tension wood had developed.
Density and microfibril angle (MFA) of tension wood and normal wood were assessed in the sapwood and heartwood, from three provenanaces of 10-year-old Eucalyptus globulus Labill. Density was measured using a modified saturation method that also enabled the calculation of the extractives lost during saturation. Microdensity and MFA were determined by SilviScan 2, a rapid X-ray densitometry and X-ray diffraction system developed at CSIRO. Significant differences were found in density and extractives between provenances and also density between the sapwood and adjacent heartwood from each provenance. This result may explain some of the drying differences between provenances found in an earlier study (Washusen and Ilic 2000). Sapwood samples with high percentages of tension wood fibres had high density and a significant positive correlation was found between microdensity and tension wood fibre percentage. MFA was found to be very low in normal wood in the sapwood, where most tension wood was found, so tension wood could not be identified by MFA. The positive association between tension wood and wood density suggests that caution should be taken when selecting trees for high wood density in tree improvement programs.
Wood stiffness, measured in terms of its modulus of elasticity (MoE) is an important characteristic of radiata pine for structural products. To select high stiffness radiata pine for breeding purpose, rapid, inexpensive methods for measuring wood stiffness are desirable. In this study, we explored acoustic instruments to measure stiffness of young standing trees in radiata pine and examined inheritance and genetic gain for stiffness in an Australian national breeding program. Time of flight of sound waves was recorded in standing trees in two progeny trials, one in eastern Victoria (Flynn) aged 8 years and the other in South Australia (Kromelite) aged 7 years. Average time of flight at Kromelite was higher than at Flynn, (519 μs/metre compared to 463 μs/metre) which corresponds to 3.7 GPa and 4.7 GPa for MoE, respectively. Heritability for time of flight was higher at Flynn (h2 = 0.67 ± 0.10) than at Kromelite (h2 = 0.30 ± 0.14). Selection of the best 10% for time of flight based on pooled data would result in 21% genetic gain in wood stiffness.
We present preliminary results of the long-term spectral monitoring of two active galactic nuclei with different broad line shapes: Ark 564 and Arp 102B. Ark 564 is a bright nearby narrow-line Syfert 1 (NLS1) galaxy with relatively narrow permitted optical emission lines and a high Fe II/Hβ ratio, while Arp 102B is a nearby broad-line radio galaxy with broad double-peaked Balmer emission lines. The spectra of Ark 564 were observed during 11-year period (1999-2009) and the spectra of Arp 102B in the 12-year period (1998-2009), with SAO 6 m and 1 m telescopes (Russia) and the OAGH 2.1 m telescope (Cananea, Mexico).