Micromagnetic modeling of a magnetically unstable zone and its geological significances

Yuqin Wang, Kunpeng Ge, Wyn Williams, Hui Zhou, Huapei Wang, Lesleis Nagy, Jiang Wang, Shengbo Liu, Yang Liu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Recent micromagnetic simulations have found that particles in the transitional zone between the single domain (SD) and single vortex (SV) zone are prone to thermal and external magnetic field instabilities that could adversely affect the accuracy of interpretations of paleomagnetic recordings. In this study, we attempt to evaluate the internal magnetization characteristics of these magnetically unstable (MU) particles and the influence on paleomagnetic observations by simulating the magnetic behavior of 68–104 nm truncated octahedral magnetite particles using the MERRILL modeling software. We found that: (a) The size region of the “MU zone” for grains of truncated octahedron shape is different from cubic octahedrons and spheres, indicating that the zone may be controlled by the geometry and shape of particles; (b) The MU zone has a range of 79–97 nm region, which is dominated by a hard-axis aligned single vortex (HSV); and (c) MU particles are unstable as a function of temperature and have low coercive fields. Finally, the numerical fitting of hysteresis parameters for experimental data suggests that the influence of such MU particles in samples should not be ignored, especially for samples with fine-grained magnetic minerals as the primary magnetic recording carriers. This research has extended our understanding of the behavior of the “MU zone” and its significance on paleomagnetic records.
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere2022JB024876
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research. Solid Earth
Issue number9
Early online date3 Sep 2022
Publication statusPublished - 3 Sep 2022


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