Date of Award


Document Type

Master's Thesis

Degree Name

Master of Science in Geology (MS)

College, School or Department Name

Department of Geological and Mining Engineering and Sciences


Aleksey V. Smirnov


Data of the strength of Earth’s magnetic field (paleointensity) in the geological past are crucial for understanding the geodynamo. Conventional paleointensity determination methods require heating a sample to a high temperature in one or more steps. Consequently, many rocks are unsuitable for these methods due to a heating-induced experimental alteration. Alternative non-heating paleointensity methods are investigated to assess their effectiveness and reliability using both natural samples from Lemptégy Volcano, France, and synthetic samples. Paleointensity was measured from the natural and synthetic samples using the Pseudo-Thellier, ARM, REM, REMc, REM’, and Preisach methods.

For the natural samples, only the Pseudo-Thellier method was able to produce a reasonable paleointensity estimate consistent with previous paleointensity data. The synthetic samples yielded more successful estimates using all the methods, with the Pseudo-Thellier and ARM methods producing the most accurate results. The Pseudo-Thellier method appears to be the best alternative to the heating-based paleointensity methods.