Petrography and shock-related remagnetization of pyrrhotite in drill cores from the Bosumtwi Impact Crater Drilling Project, Ghana

Journal article
(Original article)

Publication Details

Author(s): de Wall H
Journal: Meteoritics & Planetary Science
Publisher: Meteoritical Society
Publication year: 2007
Journal issue: 4/5
Pages range: 811-827
ISSN: 1086-9379


Rock magnetic and magnetic mineralogy data are presented from the International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (ICDP) drill cores LB-07A and LB-08A of the Bosumtwi impact structure in order to understand the magnetic behavior of impact and target lithologies and their impact-related remagnetization mechanism. Basic data for the interpretation of the magnetic anomaly patterns and the magnetic borehole measurements as well as for new magnetic modeling are provided. Magnetic susceptibility (150-500 × 10-6 SI) and natural remanent magnetization (10-3-10-1 A/m) are generally weak, but locally higher values up to 10.6 × 10-3 SI and 43 A/m occur. Sixty-three percent of the investigated rock specimens show Q values above 1 indicating that remanence clearly dominates over induced magnetization, which is a typical feature of impact structures. Ferrimagnetic pyrrhotite is the main magnetite phase, which occurs besides minor magnetite and a magnetic phase with a Curie temperature between 330 and 350 °C, interpreted as anomalous pyrrhotite. Coercive forces are between 20 and 40 mT. Brecciation and fracturing of pyrrhotite is a common feature confirming its pre-impact origin. Grain sizes of pyrrhotite show a large variation but the numerous stress-induced nanostructures observable by transmission electron microscopy (TEM) are assumed to behave as single-domain grains. We suggest that the drilled rocks lost their pre-shock remanence memory during the shock event and acquired a new, stable remanence during shock-induced grain size reduction. The observed brittle microstructures indicate temperatures not higher than 250 °C, which is below the Curie temperature of ferrimagnetic pyrrhotite (310 °C). © The Meteoritical Society, 2007. Printed in USA.

FAU Authors / FAU Editors

de Wall, Helga Prof. Dr.
Professur für Tektonik

Last updated on 2018-11-08 at 00:45

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