MagIC Global Seminar Series

Scripps Institution of Oceanography
UCSD, La Jolla, CA

Lisa Tauxe (Geosciences Research Division, SIO)
Nick Jarboe (Geosciences Research Division, SIO)

Next Seminar

Important Links


The seminar format will use Adobe Connect and a pdf prepared by the presenter. The pdf must be delivered to Nick Jarboe ( so that it can be uploaded after the virtual meeting. Participants join the meeting by directing their web browsers to and entering as guest. For those joining us that are not familiar with Adobe Connect, please join the seminar 10 minutes early so we can help you set up the connection. For more detailed instructions on setting up your adobe connection, please see this page.


  • 27 April 2015 08:00 PDT (Presented by Department of Geosciences, University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee)
    Paper: "Eruptive timing and 200 year episodicity at 92W on the hot spot-influenced Galapagos Spreading Center derived from geomagnetic paleointensity", DOI:10.1002/2014GC005315
    Presenter: Julie Bowles
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 6 April 2015 08:00 PDT (Presented by Department of Geology, Occidental College, Los Angeles)
    Paper: Cromwell et al. (in review) "New paleointensity results from rapidly cooled Icelandic lavas: Implications for Arctic geomagnetic field strength", Cromwell et al. 2015 submitted paper
    Presenter: Geoff Cromwell
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 2 March 2015 08:00 PST (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Tauxe et al. (2015) "Geology of the Wilkes land sub-basin and stability of the East Antarctic Ice Sheet: Insights from rock magnetism at IODP Site U1361", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2014.12.034
    Presenter: Lisa Tauxe
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 1 July 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by University of Sao Paulo, Departament of Geophysics)
    Paper: Di Chiara et al. (2014) "Paleointensity determination from Sao Miguel (Azores Archipelago) over the last 3 ka", DOI:10.1016/j.pepi.2014.06.008
    Presenter: Anita Di Chiara
    Presentation: ppt, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 17 June 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    Paper: Ge et al. (2014) "Effects of the core-shell structure on the magnetic properties of partially oxidized magnetite grains: Experimental and micromagnetic investigations", DOI:10.1002/2014GC005265
    Presenter: Kunpeng Ge
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 3 June 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Lefebvre et al. (2013) "Reconstructing the geometry of central Anatolia during the late Cretaceous: Large-scale Cenozoic rotations and deformation between the Pontides and Taurides", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2013.01.003
    Presenter: Nicholas Jarboe
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 20 May 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Maher and Possolo (2013) "Statistical models for use of palaeosol magnetic properties as proxies of palaeorainfall", DOI:10.1016/j.gloplacha.2013.09.017
    Presenter: Maggie Avery
    Presentation: pdf, video stream
  • 15 Apr 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by Research School of Earth Sciences, Australian National University)
    Paper: Heslop et al. (2013) "Quantifying magnetite magnetofossil contributions to sedimentary magnetizations", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2013.09.011
    Presenter: David Heslop
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 1 Apr 2014 17:00 PDT (Presented by Department of Geoscience, University of Wisconsin, Wilwaukee)
    Paper: Lappe et al. (2013) "Comparison and calibration of nonheating paleointensity methods: A case study using dusty olivine", DOI:10.1002/ggge.20141
    Presenter: Sophie-Charlotte Lappe
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 4 Mar 2014 16:30 PST (Presented by Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    Paper(unpublished work): Biomagnetic response to the Holocene Optimum: evidence from Dali Lake, North China
    Abstract: pdf
    Presenter: Suzhen Liu
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 18 Feb 2014 16:30 PST (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Urrutia-Fucugauchi et al. (2012), "Magnetic links among lava flows, tuffs and the underground plumbing system in a monogenetic volcano, derived from magnetics and paleomagnetic studies", DOI:10.1016/j.pepi.2012.09.002
    Presenter: Geoff Cromwell
    Presentation: pdf
  • 4 Feb 2014 16:30 PST (Presented by Department of Earth and Planetary Science, University of California, Berkeley)
    Paper: Jackson and Swanson-Hysell (2012), "Rock magnetism of remagnetized carbonate rocks: another look", DOI:10.1144/SP371.3
    Presenter: Nick Swanson-Hysell
    Supplemental Material: carbonate-hysteresis-compilation
  • 21 Jan 2014 16:30 PST (Presented by Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    Paper: Jiang (2013), "Pressure demagnetization of synthetic Al substituted hematite and its implications for planetary studies", DOI:10.1016/j.pepi.2013.09.005
    Presenter: Zhaoxia Jiang
    Presentation: pdf, video stream, .mov, .wmv
  • 7 Jan 2014 16:30 PST (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Laj et al. (2013), "Dynamics of the earth magnetic field in the 10-75 kyr period comprising the Laschamp and Mono Lake excursions: New results from the French Chaîne des Puys in a global perspective", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2013.11.031
    Presenter: Sanja Panovska
    Presentation: pdf
  • 3 Dec 2013 16:30 PST (Presented by Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    Paper: Wang and Kent (2013), "A paleointensity technique for multidomain igneous rocks", DOI:10.1002/ggge.20248
    Presenter: Cai Shuhui
    Presentation: pdf
  • 19 Nov 2013 16:30 PST (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Fabian et al. (2013), "Measuring the Curie temperature", DOI:10.1029/2012GC004440
    Presenter: Maggie Avery
    Presentation: pdf
  • 5 Nov 2013 16:00 PST (Presented by Institute of Geology and Geophysics, Chinese Academy of Sciences)
    Paper: Paterson et al. (2013), "The fidelity of paleomagnetic records carried by magnetosome chains", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2013.09.031
    Presenter: Greig Paterson
    Presentation: pdf
  • 15 Oct 2013 17:00 PDT (Presented by Scripps Institution of Oceanography, University of California, San Diego)
    Paper: Fanjat et al. (2013), "First archeointensity determinations on Maya incense burners from Palenque temples, Mexico: New data to constrain the Mesoamerica secular variation curve", DOI:10.1016/j.epsl.2012.12.035
    Presenter: Lisa Tauxe
    Presentation: pdf

Guidelines for Paper Selection and Discussion

Think carefully before choosing a paper. Remember that you are asking your audience to read the paper, and listen to your analysis (probably 2 hours of their time - assuming the paper can be read and understood in 1 hour).

The pdf presentation should include the following:

  • Background information on why the topic of the paper is interesting and how it relates to one or more of the MagIC Grand Challenges.
  • Identification of the authors and their expertise
  • Assessment of the major assumptions underlying the work.
  • Brief outline of the paper and results, including identification of useful data sets.
  • Questions raised by the work that are relevant to your work or Grand Challenges.
  • Assessment of the degree to which the paper was successful in making a convincing case for the conclusions.

Any figure used in your presentation must give full credit with citations to the person who made the original.


  • Promote community discussions of topics that will help advance the Grand Challenges in paleo- and rock magnetics that motivated development of the MagIC Database.
  • Train students in how to select, read, and analyze interesting and significant papers from peer-reviewed publications.
  • Present occasional tutorials/webinars on various aspects of MagIC's functionality and encourage uploading data from the papers discussed.
  • Provide a venue for informal seminars on ongoing research by participants.

The MagIC Grand Challenges

  • The Geomagnetic and Thermal History of the Earth
  • True Polar Wander and Plumes
  • Understanding Interactions Between Magnetic Field and Climate
  • Biogeomagnetism
  • Environmental Magnetism, Dust and Rainfall
  • Magnetism at High Pressures and in Extraterrestrial Bodies

For more detail see the theme descriptions below. One reason to focus on these challenges is that it provides a mechanism for advancing the goals articulated under the MagIC project.

The MagIC Grand Challenges - Details

The grand challenges listed below stand to benefit from MagIC's cooperative community approach to science. Each requires a comprehensive and versatile Cyberinfrastructure to compile, visualize and analyze data sets reported in a large number of disparate publications.

  • The Geomagnetic and Thermal History of the Earth: Paleomagnetic studies provide a unique means of viewing Earth's temporal evolution and thermal history. Very ancient paleomagnetic records combined with studies of Earth's deep interior may give rare information about the timing of formation and growth of the inner core, throwing light on the energy budget for the geodynamo and also confirming persistent dipolar structure in the early magnetic field. Other challenging problems include the assembly and interpretation of diverse paleomagnetic data to describe the full spectrum of geomagnetic field behavior, including geomagnetic reversals and how they are initiated. Interpretation of this behavior will require understanding both laboratory paleomagnetic data and synthesizing insights obtained from numerical geodynamo simulations and mineral physics via links to entities like the CIG geodynamo working group and the CSEDI program for Cooperative Studies of Earth's Deep Interior.
  • True Polar Wander and Plumes: A longstanding geodynamical question is whether significant true polar wander has occurred in the geological past. Have current mantle plumes stayed fixed in the mantle, do they blow in the mantle wind or does the entire mantle move over short time scales with respect the spin axis? Paleomagnetic results and tests of their consistency with the geocentric axial dipole hypothesis combined with detailed geological knowledge and accurate age dating carry the clues to distinguishing one from the other.
  • Understanding Interactions Between Magnetic Field and Climate: Magnetic properties and geochemical properties measured in marine and lake sediment cores carry a record of regional environmental change. Rock magnetic studies thus can be used as a proxy for climate change, although it remains a challenge to understand relations to physical parameters, such as grain size or geochemistry. Nevertheless, increasingly detailed analyses provide a rich resource for regional and global data mining and we expect substantial advances in this area over the next decade as it becomes possible to link and compare disparate data sources. More controversially, there are suggestions that changes in the geomagnetic field itself may be linked with climate changes, although even the direction of any cause-and-effect relation is debated. For this grand challenge, progress requires database linkages to high-quality age controls and creative interdisciplinary work to understand the physical causes of any links between magnetic field and climate.
  • Biogeomagnetism: Many organisms are sensitive to the Earth's geomagnetic field and employ it (in combination with other environmental cues) for a variety purposes, some of which are related to their orientation and navigation. Understanding the basis for magnetoreception in life forms, ranging from mammals to micro-organisms, is a burgeoning interdisciplinary field (see for example the special section of J. Roy. Soc. Interface doi:10.1098/rsif.2010.0010.focus) involving behavioral biology, biological physics, neuroscience, geophysics, and rock magnetism. While magnetofossils are known to be important contributors to records of the ancient geomagnetic field, we still have only a poor understanding of how various life forms accommodate large scale changes in its strength and direction. Researchers studying magnetotactic bacteria are already developing a database for information related to their gene sequencing, PCR analyses and basic rock magnetic properties ( and we believe it would be important to start to link this information to more detailed experimental results from related rock magnetic studies, and provide a home for more extensive biomagnetic experimental results.
  • Environmental Magnetism, Dust and Rainfall: Rock and mineral magnetic techniques can be used to study the formation, transportation, deposition and post-depositional alteration of magnetic minerals as they respond to changes in environmental conditions. Environmental magnetism has contributed to research in Earth science and has found applications in physics, chemistry and biological sciences including research on pollution, climate change, and iron biomineralization (see comprehensive review by Liu et al. 2012). While magnetic properties are quick to measure, deciphering the environmental implications remains a challenge requiring a detailed understanding of a range of complex measurements. The MagIC database has been designed to accommodate the wide range and enormous volume of measurements generated in a typical environmental magnetism study.
  • Magnetism at High Pressures and in Extraterrestrial Bodies: Magnetic fields associated with extraterrestrial bodies and meteorites can provide important information about their temporal evolution and thermal history. However, studies of lunar samples and meteorites have posed special challenges in paleomagnetism related to their very unusual magnetic mineralogies, issues of representative temporal and spatial sampling, and environmental stresses on samples in transit through space and on entering Earth's atmosphere. Other questions of importance are the effects of shock on remanent magnetization and its role in demagnetizing regions of planets subject to severe impacts by meteorites, especially Mars and the Moon. MagIC has already accommodated conventional lunar paleointensity results (Lawrence et al. 2008) and this database can readily deal with paleointensity experiments using SQUID microscopy or less conventional experimental techniques. New studies are also exploring the effects of high pressures, shocks and impact craters on Earth and magnetic fields associated with the early Solar System, and will provide interesting data on comparatively exotic magnetic mineralogies and physical states.

Contact Information

If you have any questions regarding the MagIC Global Seminar Series please contact Nick Jarboe.