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An updated archeomagnetic directional variation curve for France over the past two millennia, following 25 years of additional data acquisition

Abstract : Nearly 40 years ago, Emile Thellier published an article summarizing the archeomagnetic data he had obtained during his career, which had allowed him to recover the main features of the directional variations of the geomagnetic field in France for the last two millennia. This database went on to be significantly completed 25 years ago by Ileana Bucur, who had taken over Thellier's work on archeomagnetism; this forms the current basis of our knowledge of the directional evolution of the geomagnetic field in France. Since then, archeomagnetic studies have been continued at Thellier’s historical laboratory in Saint Maur. This article presents the directional archeomagnetic data obtained in France over the past 25 years in this same laboratory. A total of 528 new data are presented, which, together with the 170 results obtained on the French territory previously listed in Bucur (1994), constitute the French directional database (698 data in all). All but two of these data were obtained using the experimental protocol developed by E. Thellier based on the analysis of large samples and on a magnetic viscosity test that has proved its reliability on numerous occasions. The directions from the entire French database have been precisely defined, with 95% of the α95 values being less than 1.9°, and ~50% being less than 0.8°. The selection of 286 data with dating uncertainties of ≤50 years allowed us to compute a new reference directional variation curve for France since the first century BC using sliding windows, the variable durations and shifts of which were adapted to the time distribution of the available data, and the bivariate extension of the Fisher statistics. This shows ample and smooth variations, fairly similar to those previously determined from a much smaller database. The resulting secular variation curve is particularly well suited for use in archeomagnetic dating.
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https://hal.archives-ouvertes.fr/hal-03028894
Contributor : Yves Gallet <>
Submitted on : Friday, November 27, 2020 - 6:14:08 PM
Last modification on : Wednesday, June 30, 2021 - 9:40:16 PM
Long-term archiving on: : Sunday, February 28, 2021 - 8:35:18 PM

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Maxime Le Goff, Yves Gallet, Nicolas Warmé, Agnes Genevey. An updated archeomagnetic directional variation curve for France over the past two millennia, following 25 years of additional data acquisition. Physics of the Earth and Planetary Interiors, Elsevier, 2020, 309, pp.106592. ⟨10.1016/j.pepi.2020.106592⟩. ⟨hal-03028894⟩

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