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Acquisition of a Superconducting Rock Magnetometer and a Field Free Room

9810773 Diehl This grant provides partial support of the costs of acquiring a superconducting rock magnetometer (SRM) and field-free room for the paleomagnetics laboratory at Michigan Technological University (MTU). The SRM will replace their present spinner magnetometer that is besieged with problems and cannot be used to reliably measure weakly magnetized samples. The field free room will optimize the performance of the SRM while eliminating the acquisition of laboratory-induced viscous magnetization during storage and transfer of the samples. The addition of a SRM at MTU will allow rapid analyses of weakly magnetized sediments as well as more strongly magnetized igneous rocks. Some of the current projects that will benefit from the acquisition of the SRM include: (1) studies of the magnetic properties of volcanic ash as an aid in tephra correlation and as indicators of atmospheric fractionation, (2) the reconstruction of upper Pleistocene and Holocene paleoenvironments from cave sediments in the Moravian Karst, Czech Republic and, (3) investigations into the rates of movement along the Hilina Fault System on south flank of Kilauea Volcano, Hawaii. Future projects that will be made possible with the acquisition of the SRM include the following: (1) an investigation into the timing of the unconformity that separates Permian rocks from Triassic rocks in southwestern Utah, (2) investigations into regional climate changes since the last glaciation derived from magnetic properties of lake cores from the Keweenaw Peninsula, and (3) historical studies of the Keweenaw current based on secular variation and correlation of Lake Superior sediments. ***

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