Geomagnetic field variations in northern Sweden during the Holocene quantified from varved lake sediments and their implications for cosmogenic nuclide production rates

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Palaeomagnetic analyses were conducted on two varved lake-sediment sequences in northern Sweden. The magnetic properties of the sediment sequences are dominated by stable single-domain magnetite with characteristics typical of bacterial magnetosomes. Alternating field demagnetization measurements indicate that the single-domain magnetite is the dominant carrier of a stable natural remanent magnetization. Temporal variations in inclination and declination were obtained from a total of four cores and the data points were stacked according to their independent calendar-year (varve) ages. Statistically significant patterns in inclination and declination form a regional palaeomagnetic secular variation (PSV) curve, which possesses features that are identical in form to the UK Holocene PSV master curve. However, the calibrated radiocarbon ages of UK features identified prior to 1500 BC are approximately 500 years older than their Swedish varve-dated equivalents, which points to dating errors and/or drifting of the geomagnetic field. The sediments meet the uniformity criteria proposed for palaeointensity reconstruction and estimates of relative geomagnetic field intensity are calibrated against global dipole-moment compilations. A calculated nuclide production curve is derived from the reconstructed geomagnetic field intensity, which empirically demonstrates the dominant modulation of cosmogenic nuclide production by dipole-moment between 5000 BC and AD 1500.


Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Geology


  • Holocene, northern Sweden, cosmogenic nuclides, dipole-moment, palaeointensity, varves, palaeomagnetic secular variation
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)517-530
JournalThe Holocene
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 2002
Publication categoryResearch