Application of the Bibgham distribution function in palaeomagnetic studies.

Tullis C. Onstott

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

94 Scopus citations


Fisherian statistical parameters are frequently published for palaeomagnetic data that form elongate directional distributions, despite the fact that they are strictly applicable to circularly symmetric distributions. Thus the Bingham statistical parameters also pertain to directions dispersed along a great circle, they supply a statistical basis for describing the distribution of axes perpendicular to great circles intersecting at a common point, a problem that arises in the analysis of multicomponent magnetization, in the application of the Hargraves' correction technique, and in intersecting lunes. Application of the Bingham density function to palaeomagnetic poles from Tertiary lava flows in Iceland reveals temporal fluctuations in the eccentricity of the data. Use of the Bingham density function in the analysis of intersecting great circles is illustrated by application to data from a lightning strike remagnetized basalt in N Arizona. In this article the Bingham distribution is introduced and briefly described. A discussion of the applicability of Bingham statistics to the analysis of palaeomagnetic poles and directions and to intersecting great circles is then presented, followed by a few illustrative examples.-from Author

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1500-1510
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Geophysical Research
Issue numberB3
StatePublished - 1980

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Forestry
  • Oceanography
  • Aquatic Science
  • Ecology
  • Water Science and Technology
  • Soil Science
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth-Surface Processes
  • Atmospheric Science
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science
  • Palaeontology


Dive into the research topics of 'Application of the Bibgham distribution function in palaeomagnetic studies.'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this