• 14C Dating and Magnetostratigraphy

      Thompson, Roy (American Journal of Science, 1983-01-01)
      The history of the earth's magnetic field is preserved in the fossil magnetism of archaeologic specimens, natural rocks and sediments. Samples such as lava flows and baked sherds that acquired a thermoremanent magnetization on cooling can be used to estimate ancient geomagnetic field intensities and directions. Paleofield directions can also be obtained from fine-grained sediments that acquired detrital magnetic remanence when deposited. Study of the earth's magnetic field over the last few tens of thousands of years yields information on geomagnetic dynamo theories, causes of fluctuations in cosmic-ray activity, and the formulation of a new regional chronologic tool.