Archaeomagnetic dating limitations
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Within these weaker areas the local directions and intensities change gradually (secular variation).
A compass does not point to the true North Pole but to a direction that is a function of the North Magnetic Pole and the local secular variation to yield a magnetic declination.
Each of the samples is measured in a spinner magnetometer to determine the thermal remanent magnetism of each sample.
These paleomagnetic signatures are fixed when ferromagnetic materials such as magnetite cool below the Curie point, freezing the magnetic moment of the material in the direction of the local magnetic field at that time.
Additional data points from archaeomagnetic samples with corresponding dating techniques such as tree ring dating or carbon-14 dates, help refine the regional curves.