Definitions for paleomagnetismˌpeɪ li oʊˈmæg nɪˌtɪz əm; esp. Brit. ˌpæl i-
This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word paleomagnetism
Random House Webster's College Dictionary
pa•le•o•mag•net•ismˌpeɪ li oʊˈmæg nɪˌtɪz əm; esp. Brit. ˌpæl i-(n.)
magnetic polarization acquired by the minerals in a rock at the time the rock was deposited or solidified.
Origin of paleomagnetism:
The study of the strength and direction of the Earth's magnetic field as it has changed over geologic time.
Paleomagnetism is the study of the record of the Earth's magnetic field in rocks. Certain minerals in rocks lock-in a record of the direction and intensity of the magnetic field when they form. This record provides information on the past behavior of Earth's magnetic field and the past location of tectonic plates. The record of geomagnetic reversals preserved in volcanic and sedimentary rock sequences provides a time-scale that is used as a geochronologic tool. Geophysicists who specialize in paleomagnetism are called paleomagnetists. Paleomagnetists led the revival of the continental drift hypothesis and its transformation into plate tectonics. Apparent polar wander paths provided the first clear geophysical evidence for continental drift, while marine magnetic anomalies did the same for seafloor spreading. Paleomagnetism continues to extend the history of plate tectonics back in time and are applied to the movement of continental fragments, or terranes. Paleomagnetism relied heavily on new developments in rock magnetism, which in turn has provided the foundation for new applications of magnetism. These include biomagnetism, magnetic fabrics, and environmental magnetism.
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