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Chiba to Apply for GSSP: Chibanian?

By June 6, 2017 at 11:56 pm

Here's a bit academic terminology for you to chew on - Global Boundary Stratotype Section and Point, or GSSP in short, meaning a certain stratigraphic section that defines the lower boundary of a stage on the geologic time scale.

Now, a certain geologic stratum in Ichihara City, Chiba, is said to mark a specific point in time where the earth's magnetic field alternated 770-thousand years ago. The University of Chiba is to apply for recognition next month to the International Union of Geological Sciences, the world's body of geological scientists.

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Should the application be accepted, the area where the stratum lies is likely to be named Chibanian - the Age of Chiba. The stratum is 770-thousand-years-old and lies along the Yoro River, Ichihara.

According to the University of Chiba and the National Institute of Polar Research, the minerals and volcanic dust contained in the stratum verify vivid traces of a process of the earth's magnetic field, n/s poles, alternating approximately 770 thousand years ago. 

Italy is reported to submit applications for two of such points and the union is to screen out one of the three.

Prof Makoto Okada of Ibaraki University says:

"The earth's ages are mainly named after the areas by the Mediterranean Sea and if Chibanian should be recognized, that would be the first time Japan is highlighted.

"Studying the history of the earth leads straight to a study of calamities. Chibanian is going to be a powerful motivation for Japan's geological science at large.

"That, in turn, should expedite our research on countermeasures against natural calamities of all sorts."

The very idea of the earth's magnet fields alternating from time to time is amusing to laymen - thanks to Chibanian. (Nathan Shiga) 

Source: NHK

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