Key words Magnetostratigraphy
Geomagnetic field reversals
Springer Online Journal Archives 1860-2000
Abstract Magnetostratigraphic analyses of five sediment cores recovered from the Kolbeinsey Ridge area revealed consistent records of several geomagnetic events linked with low relative palaeointensities within the past 300 ka. Interpretation of various rock magnetic parameters clearly rule out the possibility that the recorded non-normal polarity directions are linked to a deviating magnetomineralogical fraction or a distorted magnetic fabric. Therefore, these directions are interpreted as true recordings of geomagnetic field variations. Hysteresis parameters and thermomagnetic measurements revealed pure pseudo single-domain (PSD) magnetite with Curie temperatures of 580 °C as the dominant remanence carrier mineral. Due to the homogeneity of the rock magnetic parameters, the sediments are also suitable for relative palaeointensity determinations. Oxygen-isotope stratigraphies for two of the cores provided a time frame to estimate the age ranges for the recorded geomagnetic field variations. The obtained record of ten events of up to 12 ka duration during the past 300 ka and the related record of relative palaeointensity indicate a fairly dynamic character of the Earth's magnetic field, which is in clear contrast to published polarity time scales.
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