Estimating susceptibility and magnetization within the Earth's continental crust: Petrophysical and Satellite approaches

Thursday, 18 December 2014: 3:10 PM
Suzanne A McEnroe, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway and Michael E Purucker, NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, MD, United States
Magnetic models (Xchaos) made from Champ and Orsted data are used to place constraints on the average magnetic susceptibility and its variability in the continental crust. Estimates of magnetic crustal thickness are made in a two-step process. The first step uses a recent seismic model (Crust1.0) to estimate the thickness of crystalline crust above the Moho, modified in the Andes and the Himalayas to account for the non-magnetic lower crust there. The second step calculates the magnetic field expected from such a layer of crystalline rock assuming the magnetization is solely induced in the earth’s main field by rock of constant magnetic susceptibility, and modifies the starting crustal thickness to bring it into agreement with the Xchaos model. This global model removes spherical harmonic degrees less than 15 to account for the core field mask. We restrict our attention to the continental crust, in particular to Australia, western North America, and Scandinavia. Petrophysical and petrological data from Scandinavian rocks that have been deep in the crust help place limits on susceptibility values. Our simulations use two susceptibilities, 0.02 and 0.04 SI. The mean crystalline crustal thickness from the seismic model is 42 and 37 km in western North America and Australia, respectively, and the modification with the magnetic data makes little change to the mean crustal thickness, irrespective of whether the susceptibility is 0.02 or 0.04 SI. However, the modification with the magnetic data does make a significant difference to the standard deviation of the crustal thickness, increasing it by a factor of two in the case of a susceptibility of 0.04, and by a factor of four in the case of a susceptibility of 0.02. The changes to the standard deviation of the crustal thickness are also evident in the Scandinavian data, but the mean crystalline crustal thickness of 45 km is significantly larger than that found from either magnetic model (33 and 30 km). The differences could be due to magnetic remanence oblique to the present field, or to weaker magnetizations in the crust. We use Swarm data from 10 April (Kp<0+) to place bounds on the minimum apparent magnetization required, irrespective of direction, to explain the observations, in an approach pioneered by Parker.