The magnetic structure and palaeomagnetic recording fidelity of sub-micron greigite (Fe3S4)

Miguel A. Valdez-Grijalva, Leslies Nagy, Adrian R. Muxworthy, Wyn Williams, Karl Fabian

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We present the results of a finite-element micromagnetic model of View the MathML source to View the MathML source greigite (Fe3S4) grains with a variety of equant morphologies. This grain size range covers the magnetic single-domain (SD) to pseudo single-domain (PSD) transition, and possibly also the PSD to multi-domain (MD) transition. The SD–PSD threshold d0 is determined to be View the MathML source depending on grain shape. The nudged elastic-band method was used to determine the room temperature energy barriers between stable states and thus the blocking volumes. It is found that, in the absence of interparticle magnetostatic interactions, the magnetisation of equant SD greigite is not stable on a geological scale and only PSD grains View the MathML source can be expected to carry a stable magnetisation over billion-year timescales, i.e., all non-interacting SD particles are essentially superparamagnetic. We further identify a mechanism for the PSD to multi-domain (MD) transition, which is of a continuous nature from PSD nucleation up to View the MathML source, when structures typical of MD behaviour like closure domains begin to form.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEarth and Planetary Science Letters
Publication statusPublished - 5 Dec 2017

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