Imprint of magnetic flux expulsion at the core-mantle boundary on geomagnetic field intensity variations

M. Troyano*, A. Fournier, Y. Gallet, C. C. Finlay

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal articleResearchpeer-review


During the last decade, rapid or extreme geomagnetic field intensity variations associated with rates greater than the maximum currently observed have been inferred from archeomagnetic data in the Near-East and in Western Europe. The most extreme events, termed geomagnetic spikes, are defined as intensity peaks occurring over a short time (a few decades), and are characterized by high variation rates, up to several μT/yr. Magnetic flux expulsion from the Earth’s outer core has been suggested as one possible explanation for these peaks but has not yet been examined in detail. In this study, we develop a two-dimensional kinematic model for magnetic flux expulsion whose key control parameter is the magnetic Reynolds number Rm, the ratio of magnetic diffusion time to advection time. This model enables the tracking of magnetic field lines which are distorted and folded by a fixed flow pattern.
Original languageEnglish
JournalGeophysical Journal International
Issue number3
Pages (from-to)1984-2009
Publication statusPublished - 2020


  • Magnetic field variations through time
  • Rapid time variations
  • Dynamo
  • Theories and simulations
  • Archaeomagnetism

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