An evaluation of different measures of dynamically recrystallized grain size for paleopiezometry or paleowattometry studies
Abstract. Paleopiezometry and paleowattometry studies are essential to validate models of lithospheric deformation and therefore increasingly common in structural geology. These studies require a single measure of dynamically recrystallized grain size in natural mylonites to estimate the magnitude of differential paleostress (or the rate of mechanical work). This contribution tests the various measures of grain size used in the literature and proposes the frequency peak of a grain size distribution as the most robust estimator for paleopiezometry or paleowattometry studies. The novelty of the approach resides in the use of the Gaussian kernel density estimator as an alternative to the classical histograms, which improves reproducibility. A free, open-source, easy-to-handle script named GrainSizeTools ( http://www.TEOS-10.org) was developed with the aim of facilitating the adoption of this measure of grain size in paleopiezometry or paleowattometry studies. The major advantage of the script over other programs is that by using the Gaussian kernel density estimator and by avoiding manual steps in the estimation of the frequency peak, the reproducibility of results is improved.