On the Reliability (Remagnetization?) of Paleomagnetic Poles Obtained from Permo-Silurian Rocks from Oaxaca Mexico, Belize and Guatemala: Insights from Rock Magnetic Studies


In the reconstruction of past movements of tectonic plates, the determination of reliable paleomagnetic poles is of utmost importance. To achieve accurate results, a full knowledge of the rock magnetic properties of the samples is required particularly for Curie point, for grain-size analyses in addition to thermal and alternating field (a.f.) demagnetization experiments. We present the comparative results of 20 sites drilled at 3 different Paleozoic areas: The Permian rocks of the Juchatengo area in Oaxaca, Mexico; the Late Silurian (~418 Ma) Mountain Pine Ridge Granite, the Hummingbird Granite in Belize, and the Early Leonardian Chochal Limestone in Guatemala. The samples of all 20 sites were subjected to a.f. and thermal demagnetization in 16 steps from NRM to 100 mT, the thermally demagnetized samples were cleaned in 15 increasing temperature steps from NRM up to 675℃. Principal component analysis was applied to the samples in order to obtain their respective mean directions. Saturation Isothermal Remanent Magnetization (SIRM), hysteresis loops, and coercivity experiments performed indicate that about 90% of the samples were characterized by Multi-Domain (MD) grain sizes and the rest were in the Pseudo-Single Domain (PSD) range of the Day diagram. Curie point determinations results ranged from 190℃ to 660℃, indicating the presence of titanomagnetites as well as hematite. In the Juchatengo area reliable poles were obtained from 3 sites, in Belize 3 sites and only 2 sites of the Permian Chochal Formation, Guatemala yielded coherent and useful results. All the “reliable” paleopoles obtained do not agree with the APWP of North America.

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J. Guerrero-Garcia and E. Herrero-Bervera, "On the Reliability (Remagnetization?) of Paleomagnetic Poles Obtained from Permo-Silurian Rocks from Oaxaca Mexico, Belize and Guatemala: Insights from Rock Magnetic Studies," Open Journal of Geology, Vol. 2 No. 2, 2012, pp. 48-56. doi: 10.4236/ojg.2012.22005.

Conflicts of Interest

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.


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