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Selkin, PA, Gee JS, Meurer WP.  2014.  Magnetic anisotropy as a tracer of crystal accumulation and transport, Middle Banded Series, Stillwater Complex, Montana. Tectonophysics. 629:123-137.   10.1016/j.tecto.2014.03.028   AbstractWebsite

Fabric studies of layered mafic intrusions have led to improved understanding of the mechanical processes operating in large magma chambers, including crystal accumulation and crystal mush deformation. Such studies, however, are typically limited by a tradeoff between breadth (number of sites studied, characteristic of field-focused work) and sensitivity (ability to discern subtle fabric elements, characteristic of laboratory fabric analyses). Magnetic anisotropy, if analyzed in a systematic way and supported by single-crystal and petrofabric measurements, permits relatively rapid characterization of magmatic fabrics for large numbers of samples. Here we present the results of a study of remanence and susceptibility anisotropy from three transects through the Middle Banded Series of the Stillwater Complex, Montana. All three transects exhibit a magnetic foliation that increases with stratigraphic height up to the top of Olivine Bearing Zone III, consistent with crystal mush compaction. Perhaps more importantly, each tansect is characterized by a subtle lineation in the anisotropy of magnetic susceptibility with a consistent direction within that transect The magnetic lineation directions, which generally coincide with crystallographic preferred orientations of silicate minerals, likely record a pre-compaction fabric. Lineation directions differ from one transect to another, implying that the process generating the lineation - either slumping of a semiconsolidated crystal mush or magma transport - acted on length scales of at most a few km. These results demonstrate the sensitivity of magnetic anisotropy to petrofabric in mafic rocks. (C) 2014 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Selkin, PA, Gee JS, Meurer WP, Hemming SR.  2008.  Paleointensity record from the 2.7 Ga Stillwater Complex, Montana. Geochemistry Geophysics Geosystems. 9   10.1029/2008gc001950   AbstractWebsite

The record of geomagnetic intensity captured in the 2.7 Ga Stillwater Complex (Montana, USA) provides a statistical description of the Archean geodynamo. We present results of modified Thellier paleointensity experiments on 441 core specimens, 114 of which pass strict reliability criteria. The specimens are from 53 sites spanning most of the Banded Series rocks in the Stillwater Complex. On the basis of thermochronologic and petrologic evidence, we interpret the highest temperature component of remanence to be a late Archean thermoremanence, though the possibility remains that it is a thermochemical remanence. Thermal models indicate that the highest temperature magnetization component at each of the sites averages similar to 20-200 ka of geomagnetic secular variation. The suite of sites as distributed through the Banded Series samples a roughly a 1 Ma time interval. The average of the most reliable paleointensity measurements, uncorrected for the effects of anisotropy or cooling rate, is 38.2 +/- 11.3 mu T (1 sigma). Remanence anisotropy, cooling rate, and the nonlinear relationship between applied field and thermoremanence have a significant effect on paleointensity results; a corrected average of 30.6 +/- 8.8 mu T is likely a more appropriate value. Earth's average dipole moment during the late Archean (5.05 +/- 1.46 x 10(22) Am(2), lambda(pmag) = 44.5 degrees) was well within the range of estimates from Phanerozoic rocks. The distribution of site-mean paleointensities around the mean is consistent with that expected from slow cooling over timescales expected from thermal models and with secular variation comparable to that of the Phanerozoic field.

Selkin, PA, Gee JS, Tauxe L.  2007.  Nonlinear thermoremanence acquisition and implications for paleointensity data. Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 256:81-89.   10.1016/j.epsl.2007.01.017   AbstractWebsite

In paleointensity studies, thermoremanence is generally regarded as a linear function of ambient inagnetic field at low fields comparable to that of the present-day Earth. We find pronounced nonlinearity at low fields for a class of materials with silicate-hosted magnetite that otherwise perforin well in paleointensity experiments. We model this nonlinearity with narrow size ranges of large, acicular single domain grains, which are most likely in a vortex state (i.e. nonuniformly magnetized, sometimes labeled pseudosingle domain). Simple TRM theory predicts that even certain single domain particles will also exhibit a nonlinear response, saturating in fields as low as the Earth's. Such behavior, although likely to be rare, may bias some paleointensity estimates. The bias is especially pronounced when the laboratory field is higher than the ancient field. Fortunately, the fundamental assumption that thermoremanence is proportional to applied field can (and should) be routinely checked at the end of successful paleointensity experiments by adding two extra heating steps. (c) 2007 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.

Gee, JS, Meurer WP, Selkin PA, Cheadle MJ.  2004.  Quantifying three-dimensional silicate fabrics in cumulates using cumulative distribution functions. Journal of Petrology. 45:1983-2009.   10.1093/petrology/egh045   AbstractWebsite

We present a new method for quantifying three-dimensional silicate fabrics and the associated uncertainties from grain orientation data on three orthogonal sections. Our technique is applied to the orientation of crystallographic features and, hence, yields a fabric related to the lattice-preferred orientation, although the method could be applied to shape-preferred orientations or strain analysis based on passive linear markers. The orientation data for each section are represented by their cumulative distribution function, and an iterative procedure is used to find the symmetric second-rank strain tensor that will simultaneously satisfy the cumulative distribution functions observed on each section. For samples with well-developed fabrics, this technique provides a much closer match to the sectional data than do previous techniques based on eigenparameter analysis of two-dimensional orientation data. Robust uncertainty estimates are derived from a non-parametric bootstrap resampling scheme. The method is applied to two cumulates: one with a well-developed fabric and the other with a weak fabric, from the Stillwater complex, Montana. The silicate petrofabric orientations obtained for these samples compare favorably with independent direct estimates of the volume fabric from electron backscatter diffraction and magnetic techniques.