autopew: Microanalytical Coordinate System Transforms

Williams, Morgan1, Schoneveld, Louise1

1CSIRO Mineral Resources, Australian Resources Research Centre, Kensington, WA, Australia

autopew is an open source Python package designed for coordinate system transformation which enables easy transfer of analysis points between microanalytical equipment sample stages and/or images.  This software supports rapid and repeatable sample targeting over multiple instruments and analytical techniques (e.g electron microprobe and laser ablation) which maximises instrument time available for data collection, rather than sample navigation, spot location and naming consistency. The ability to record and precisely relocate sample analyses with autopew allows reproducible integration of multiple microanalytical point-sampling and imaging datasets.

autopew allows for arbitrary transformation between planar cartesian coordinate systems (including images) using two-dimensional affine transforms. The package provides methods for import and export of sample coordinates in a variety of file formats, allowing for direct-import of coordinates for a selection of instruments. Networks of coordinate transformations between multiple images and instrument stages are readily constructed, allowing cross-referencing between images and stage coordinates. The coordinate transforms between images and sample stages can be archived with completed analytical datasets for future reference and data quality assurance and quality control (QA/QC) where needed.

Where high resolution images are acquired (e.g. via light or electron microscopy), autopew records the micro-spatial context of each in-situ analysis. This will support new insights into the micro-environmental effects and spatial dependence of mineral and glass geochemistry and allow for more reliable inference across scales, i.e. from well-characterised in-situ microanalysis to macroscale geological processes.

The package is currently under active development, for more information on features and how to participate see


Louise obtained her bachelors and honours in geology from James Cook University, Townsville and in 2018 graduated with a PhD from the Australian National University (ANU).  Currently she is focussed microanalysis of mineral indicators for magmatic sulfide deposits

About the GSA

The Geological Society of Australia was established as a non-profit organisation in 1952 to promote, advance and support Earth sciences in Australia.

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