Impact recognition, impact controversies, Africa and the Chiemgau impact

In addition to the post from below

“The convincing identification of terrestrial meteorite impact structures: What works, what doesn’t, and why”

we refer to two articles that again are shedding light on how exposed impact researchers (here: Christian Koeberl, Vienna, and Wolf Uwe Reimold, Berlin) crusade against impact structures/events with all evidence of shock metamorphism and generally accepted impact evidence by suppressing internationally published work.


In their paper Impact structures in Africa: A review. J. African Earth Sci., 93, 57-175, Reimold and Koeberl also massacre the Chiemgau impact (obviously not located in Africa), and a full comment article (in German with English abstract) by K. Ernstson can be clicked HERE. The abstract and a list of 16 contributions on the Chiemgau impact (Nos. 1-13 listed in the SAO/NASA Astrophysics Data System (ADS)) follow:


1  Wolf Uwe Reimold and Christian Koeberl are using an article on impact structures in Africa which they have published in the “Journal of African Earth Sciences” to yet again crusade against the Chiemgau impact meanwhile established as a reality and based on evidenced shock effects (PDFs, diaplectic glasses, shatter cones) and spectacular findings of geological, mineralogical and cosmochemical features. Such campaigns are common practice with a few leading impact researchers of the so-called impact community (whatever this might be) in particular once innovative findings are concerned and once they themselves have not been involved in the respective research. This does not affect solely the Chiemgau impact.

2  The authors Reimold and Koeberl refer to the literature mentioning no more than a sole article (Heinlein 2009) that they use as supporting document for allegedly lacking evidence of the Chiemgau impact. Results of own research are not presented and do not exist. Dieter Heinlein, author of the respective article written in German language and printed in a hardly accessible German magazine for hobby astronomers and friends of stars has not finished any scientific degree and has never worked on any impact subject, as well as on glacial geology either. To call upon this author and his exceptionally poor contribution as sole argument opposed to the Chiemgau impact can be termed embarrassing only.

3  While the reference to the Heinlein article must be characterized as simply embarrassing, the complete concealment – bar one – of the 16 (!) Chiemgau research papers contributed to international meetings and in international journals, and listed below is a procedure scientifically absolutely unacceptable shedding some light on the view of science of Reimold and Koeberl. Many of these Chiemgau papers have been written in cooperation with reputable researchers from home and abroad and presented at classic international meetings like the Lunar & Planetary Science Conference (LPSC), the Meteoritical Society meeting or the meeting of the American Geophysical Union (AGU).

4  In order to justify their renewed attack against the Chiemgau impact research Reimold and Koeberl claim that when discussing possible new impact craters also the regional-geologic setting has to be taken into consideration. At that they in particular accentuate a glacial overprint obviously aiming at the Chiemgau impact strewn field that in their opinion is a cluster of glacially produced “holes”. In doing so they do not at all realize that they are questioning their own and always propagated postulate – shock as prerequisite for acceptance of impact – and putting the case for all those regional geologists who deny the existence of impact structures because these are incompatible with the regional-geologic setting.

List of publications on the Chiemgau impact event (withheld evidence by Reimold and Koeberl)

1          Ernstson, Hilt, Neumair: Microtektite-Like Glasses from the Northern Calcareous Alps (Southeast Germany): Evidence of a Proximal Impact Ejecta Origin.….45.1200E

2          Ernstson, Müller, Neumair: The Proposed Nalbach (Saarland, Germany) Impact Site: Is it a Companion to the Chiemgau (Southeast Bavaria, Germany) Impact Strewn Field?

3          Neumair, Ernstson: Peculiar Holocene Soil Layers: Evidence of Possible Distal Ejecta Deposits in the Chiemgau Region, Southeast Germany

4          Bauer, Hiltl, Rappenglück, Neumair, Ernstson: Fe2Si (Hapkeite) from the Subsoil in the Alpine Foreland (Southeast Germany): Is it Associated with an Impact?

5          Rappenglück, Bauer, Hiltl, Neumair, Ernstson: Calcium-Aluminium-Rich Inclusions in Iron Silicide (Xifengite, Gupeiite, Hapkeite) Matter: Evidence of a Cosmic Origin.

6          Shumilova, Isaenko, Makeev, Ernstson, Neumair, Rappenglück: Enigmatic Poorly Structured Carbon Substances from the Alpine Foreland, Southeast Germany: Evidence of a Cosmic Relation….43.1430S

7          Ernstson, Sideris, Liritzis, Neumair: The Chiemgau Meteorite Impact Signature of the Stöttham Archaeological Site (SE Germany)….12..249E

8          Ernstson, Mayer, Neumair, Sudhaus: The sinkhole enigma in the Alpine Foreland, Southeast Germany: Evidence of impact-induced rock liquefaction processes….3..385E

9          Ernstson, Neumair: Geoelectric Complex Resistivity Measurements of Soil Liquefaction Features in Quaternary Sediments of the Alpine Foreland, Germany

10        Neumair, Ernstson: Geomagnetic and morphological signature of small crateriform structures in the Alpine Foreland, Southeast Germany

11        Hiltl, Bauer, Ernstson, Mayer, Neumair, Rappenglück: SEM and TEM Analyses of Minerals Xifengite, Gupeiite, Fe2Si (Hapkeite?), Titanium Carbide (TiC) and Cubic Moissanite (SiC) from the Subsoil in the Alpine Foreland: Are they Cosmochemical?….42.1391H

12        Liritzis, Zacharias, Polymeris, Kitis, Ernstson, Sudhaus, Neumair, Mayer, Rappenglück, M.A., Rappenglück, B.: The Chiemgau Meteorite Impact And Tsunami Event (Southeast Germany): First OSL dating….10…17L 

13        Rappenglück, B., Ernstson, Mayer, Neumair, Rappenglück, M.A., Sudhaus, Zeller: The Chiemgau Impact: An Extraordinary Case Study for the Question of Holocene Meteorite Impacts and their Cultural Implications

14        Ernstson, Shumilova, Isaenko, Neumair, Rappenglück: From biomass to glassy carbon and carbynes: evidence of possible meteorite impact shock coalification and carbonization. Modern problems of theoretical, experimental and applied mineralogy (Yushkin Memorial Seminar–2013): Proceedings of mineralogical seminar with international participation. Syktyvkar: IG Komi SC UB RAS, 2013. 546 p.

15        Isaenko, Shumilova, Ernstson, Shevchuk, Neumair, Rappenglück: Carbynes and DLC in naturally occurring carbon matter from the Alpine Foreland, South-East Germany: Evidence of a probable new impactite. First European Mineralogical Conference 2-6 September 2012 – Frankfurt, Germany

16        Ernstson, Mayer, Neumair, Rappenglück, B., Rappenglück, M.A., Sudhaus, Zeller: The Chiemgau crater strewn field: evidence of a Holocene large impact in southeast Bavaria, Germany. – Journal of Siberian Federal University, Engineering & Technology, 1 (2010 3) 72-103.


Taking the same line, Reimold and Koeberl (with coauthors L. Ferrière and A. Deutsch) in a 9 pages “Letter to the Editor” of Meteoritics & Planetary Science once more crusade against the Chiemgau impact (and other proposed impacts) playing the schoolmasters but dishonestly suppressing all published impact evidence. They have never set foot in the Chiemgau impact region, they never saw any geologic outcrop, they have ignored geophysical evidence, and in principle they have ignored everything. They have never entered into a discussion with the scientists and researchers of the Chiemgau impact event, and they have considered clear shock effects (e.g. PDFs and diaplectic glass) from remote (published photomicrographs) diagnosis only. As written in the abstract above their only argument of opposition is a reference to Dieter Heinlein, author of an article written in German language and printed in a hardly accessible German magazine for hobby astronomers and friends of stars, who has not finished any scientific degree and has never worked on any impact subject. And we repeat: To call upon this author and his exceptionally poor contribution as sole argument opposed to the Chiemgau impact can be termed embarrassing only. Embarrassing, embarrassing … And we wonder at Meteoritics & Planetary Science and the acceptance of this schoolmaster-playing “Letter to the Editor”.

Reference: Reimold, W.U., Ferrière, L., Deutsch, A., and Koeberl, C. (2014): Impact controversies: Impact recognition criteria and related issues. – Meteoritics & Planetary Science, 49, 723-731.