Calendar of Events

Events Calendar

The Lunar Dynamo

Date and Time: Wednesday, March 06, 2019, 10:30am - 11:30am
Location: Physics and Astronomy Lecture Hall

Speaker: Sonia Tikoo-Schantz

The Department of Earth & Planetary Sciences, Rutgers Remanent magnetism observed within the lunar crust and in Apollo samples indicates that the Moon generated an ancient core dynamo magnetic field. Paleomagnetic measurements suggest the dynamo started no later than 4.25 billion years ago (Ga) and ceased sometime after 2.5 Ga. During the period between approximately 3.85 and 3.56 Ga, the intensity of lunar surface fields rivaled that of the modern terrestrial field. Due to the relatively small size of the Moon and its core, both the intensity of longevity of the lunar dynamo challenge conventional dynamo theory, whereby magnetic fields are generated by thermochemical convection of molten metal within planetary cores. In this presentation, I discuss results from recent paleomagnetism and crustal magnetism studies and discuss how lunar thermal evolution models and magnetohydrodynamics models are providing more insight into possible lunar dynamo generation mechanisms and power sources.

Extra Info: Please contact our administrative assistant Lisa Rivera (lrivera at with questions regarding travel arrangements and reimbursements. Questions about the colloquium schedule should be addressed to Prof. Misha Gershenson (gersh at
  • Host: Eric Gawiser
  • Tea, coffee, and cookies served at 10:20
  • All welcome!