Acta Geophysica

, Volume 67, Issue 2, pp 517–532 | Cite as

Relationship between mineral magnetic properties and soil textural parameters

  • M. O. KanuEmail author
  • O. C. Meludu
  • N. Basavaiah
  • A. S. Oniku
Research Article - Applied Geophysics


The study analyzed the relationship between mineral magnetic properties and particle size in order to determine the suitability of magnetic measurements to serve as particle size proxy for urban top soils samples collected from Jalingo, NE Nigeria. Pearson correlation analyses between mineral magnetic parameters (χlf, χfd%, χARM, SIRM, Soft IRM, ARM/SIRM) and particle size properties (PM2.5, PM10, clay, silt and sand) are reported. Results indicate that each particle size class shows different strength of correlation with magnetic parameters, implying that each particle class contains a proportion of magnetic minerals. For the whole data set (n = 154), χfd%, χARM and ARM/SIRM show significant positive correlation with the fine size fractions (PM2.5, PM10, clay and silt) but negatively correlated with the sand proportion, while χlf, SIRM and Soft IRM exhibit contrasting relationship. Of all the magnetic parameters, the magnetic parameters indicating fine-grained ferrimagnetic minerals (ARM/SIRM and χARM) have the strongest and most significant correlations. The nature of the magneto-particle size relationship is different when examined in terms of land use. The fact that magnetic properties and textural parameters have strong relationship indicates that magnetic methods could be considered a potential particle size proxy in Jalingo. However, since the relationship does not follow predictable and consistent patterns of other studies in top soils and sedimentary settings, it brings to fore the non-universality of the method. Hence, the type of relationship existing between magnetic and particle size properties in an environmental setting must be determined before applying the magnetic method as particle size proxy.


Mineral magnetic Particle size Particulate matter Environmental Soil 



This research was partly funded by the Taraba State University TETFund grant, and the authors are deeply grateful. The Department of Science and Technology (DST), India, and the Indian Institute of Geomagnetism (IIG), Mumbai, India, are also appreciated for access and use of the facilities at the Environmental Magnetism Laboratory. The authors wish to thank Drs. K. Deenadayalan and P. K. Das for assistance during laboratory measurements.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

On behalf of all authors, the corresponding author states that there is no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Institute of Geophysics, Polish Academy of Sciences & Polish Academy of Sciences 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • M. O. Kanu
    • 1
    Email author
  • O. C. Meludu
    • 2
  • N. Basavaiah
    • 3
  • A. S. Oniku
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of PhysicsTaraba State UniversityJalingoNigeria
  2. 2.Department of PhysicsModibbo Adama University of TechnologyYolaNigeria
  3. 3.Environmental Magnetism LaboratoryIndian Institute of GeomagnetismMumbaiIndia

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