East Pacific Rise Crest: A Near-Bottom Geophysical Profile

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Science  03 Jan 1969:
Vol. 163, Issue 3862, pp. 68-71
DOI: 10.1126/science.163.3862.68


A deep-towed magnetometer profile made across the East Pacific Rise crest shows many anomalies with about 1000-gamma amplitudes and 500-meter wavelengths and has larger amplitude changes corresponding to magnetic field reversals. This profile across contacts between normal and reversely magnetized crustal blocks is interpreted to place an upper limit of 4700 years on the time required for field reversals and an upper limit of 280 meters on the width of the intrusion center at the rise crest. This intrusion center may occasionally shift several kilometers laterally with respect to the rise axis. The magnetometer records are compatible with the hypothesis that the magnetic field has undergone many fluctuations of short period and small intensity in the past 2 million years. Sediment accumulation increases from less than 2 meters at the rise crest axis to about 20 meters at the western end and 10 meters at the eastern end of the profile. This increase in accutmiulation appears to be the result of ocean-floor spreading.

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