Band Iron Formations
These Band Iron formations are precambrian sedimentary rocks. They are highly magnetic. Band Iron Formations like this one were responsible for prominent variations in Earths magnetic field, like the Kursk Magnetic Anomaly that was remotely sensed by satellites. Kursk is located in western Russia, at the confluence of the Seym and Tuskar rivers. Credit: Photo courtesy of P.Hoffman
Lithospheric Magnetic Anomalies
This image shows variations in magnetic fields in the upper layer of Earths surface known as the lithosphere. The data were acquired by satellites passing over at an altitude of 400 km. The satellite data were run through a model to produce this image. The units are in nanoteslas, the common unit for measuring magnetic fields. The color bar indicates areas with positive and negative magnetic fields. Credit: Terrence Sabaka et al./NASA GSFC
NASA and the United States Geological Survey (USGS) are teaming up to create one of the most complete databases of magnetic properties of Earth’s rocks ever assembled. The partnership demonstrates ongoing interagency collaboration.
Satellite data of Earth’s magnetic field combined with rock magnetic data collected on the ground will provide more complete insight into Earth’s geology, gravity and magnetism.
Satellites, including NASA’s Magsat, have detected magnetic signals in the upper layer of the Earth, called the lithosphere. With over 36,000 rock samples, the combined database will help researchers determine the origin of these signals in Earth’s crust.
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