Focusing on the Charlevoix (Quebec, Canada) impact structure

Charlevoix impact structure observatory From a communication with the “OBSERVATOIRE de L’ASTROBLÈME de Charlevoix” (Prof. Jean-Michel Gastonguay, academic advisor) the idea arose to present here on our website the Charlevoix impact structure and some of its prominent geologic inventory as well as a hint to the observatory with its museum and geologic route.  Continue reading “Focusing on the Charlevoix (Quebec, Canada) impact structure”

Impact educational

Dear visitor of our website,

in the last years we have observed a permanently increasing number of page views, and statistics counted more than 9,000 (nine thousand) just for the last four weeks and solely for the English version. And statistics also said that a very high percentage of the views have accounted for the page on “Understanding the Impact Cratering Process: a Simple Approach“. This was the initial spark to introduce a new category “Impact educational” that may be clicked in the top menu from now on. Moreover, we got clear about the fact that many of our scientific contributions – to say it geologically – have sedimented and buried to deeper and deeper layers, and many an article may have become subject even to subduction and oblivion – despite all search engines. Hence, our new “Impact educational” category especially intends to excavate older impact literature of particular importance and interest, and specific subject areas earlier discussed on our homepage will step by step be brought into a new context also integrating new research aspects and publications. Make a test and read about meteorite impact spallation, including a chapter on dynamic spallation vs. tectonic stress – fractured pebbles as a stress indicator!

Impact recognition, impact controversies, Africa and the Chiemgau impact

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.

Microtektites in the Alpine foreland: evidence of a Chiemgau impact relationship

In the Chiemgau meteorite crater strewn field (Ernstson et al. 2010, and references therein) impact glasses are found widespread in various formations, and tektite-like bodies of a dense black glass with vesicles have attracted considerable attention (Fig. 1).


Fig. 1.Dense black glass particles from the Chiemgau impact strewn field frequently exhibiting tektite-like shape and twisted form similar to irghizites from the Zhamanshin impact crater. – Click to enlarge!

Only recently, outside the crater strewn field in the foothills of the Alps at some 1500 m altitude a systematic search for impact fallout has revealed not only abundant tiny iron silicide particles (e.g., minerals xifengite and gupeiite) but also microtektites widely distributed in the soils (Fig. 2, 3).

A more detailed report can be read HERE.

Added link:  Abstract presented at the LPSC 45th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2014


Fig. 3. Microtektites from the soil in the foothills of the Alps near the Chiemgau impact crater strewn field. Optical microscope images, 100 µm scale bar in each case. – Click to enlarge!

Microtektites Alpine Foreland Chiemgau impact

Fig. 4. SEM micrographs of microtektite-like glass particles show
very strange surface features and bizarre forms exhibiting micrometer-sized glass filaments and twisted bodies. – Click to enlarge!

Azuara impact geology

Diamictic impact ejecta in a new outcrop near Aguilón

by Daniel Gorgas, Ferran Claudin & Kord Ernstson (October 2013)

Aguilón exposure Azuara impact structure

On the occasion of foundation work for a windmill near Aguilón (Fig. 1) one of the authors (D.G.) once again came across an exposure of highlighting impact geology (Figs. 2, 3) that practically is self-explaining. A big roundish block of (probably) Malmian oncolitic limestone (Fig. 4) is embedded in a diamictite and in the broadest sense is part of this polymictic diamictic deposit within the northern ring anticline of the Azuara impact structure. Since other formation possibilities fail to explain this extraordinary setting (a big landslide, e.g.,  can be excluded because of lacking relief) the deposit is clear evidence of impact ejecta excavated from the growing Azuara impact cavity. The roundness of this big “ball” can be explained by rotation and transport under high confining pressure exerted by the now embedding diamictic material.  Continue reading “Azuara impact geology”

76th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting (2013), Edmonton, Canada

meteoritical society meeting 2013 edmonton

The following contributions to the MetSoc Meeting may be downloaded here:

Michael A. Rappenglück, Frank Bauer, Michael Hiltl, Andreas Neumair, Kord Ernstson:


Poster CAIs mini Click Poster CAIs

Abstract download

(download problems? Click here: Abstract CAIs)


Andreas Neumair, Kord Ernstson:


Poster distal ejecta png  Click Poster Distal Ejecta

Abstract download

(download problems? Click here: Abstract distal ejecta )


Kord Ernstson, Werner Müller, Andreas Neumair:

Poster Nalbach Chiemgau mini  Click Poster Nalbach Chiemgau

Abstract download

(download problems? Click here: Abstract Nalbach – Chiemgau)


Frank Bauer, Michael Hiltl, Michael A. Rappenglück, Andreas Neumair, Kord Ernstson:

Poster hapkeite mini  Click Poster Hapkeite

Abstract download 

(download problems? Click here: Abstract hapkeite)


The Weaubleau impact structure “round rocks” (“Missouri rock balls”, “Weaubleau eggs”): possible analogues in the Spanish Azuara/Rubielos de la Cérida impact structures.

by Kord Ernstson & Ferran Claudin (July 2013)
Abstract. – The “round rocks” of the Weaubleau-Osceola impact structure have phenomenological counterparts in the Spanish Azuara/Rubielos de la Cérida impact structures where they occur within voluminous heavily brecciated rock units. Related nodular bodies within large monomictic movement breccias are observed also in the Ries impact structure. A process similar to the formation of monomictic impact breccias with rounded clasts as part of a mortar texture is suggested. A relation to the Weaubleau-Osceola “round rocks” may exist but not necessarily.

1 Introduction

The Weaubleau (or now Weaubleau-Osceola) circular feature in southwestern Missouri is a 19 km-diameter impact structure that formed in the Mid-Carboniferous about 330 million years ago (Evans et al. 2003).

A peculiar feature clearly restricted to and common throughout the Weaubleau structure are the “round rocks” called also “Missouri rock balls” or “Weaubleau eggs” (Figs. 1, 2). Originally considered to be of glacial origin they are in general attributed now to the impact event. The idea of a formation as mega-accrecionary lapilli has been discarded and a diagenetic formation from blasted siltstone clasts intermixed in the fallback breccia and subsequent silification is mostly discussed. Nonetheless, the process of formation is still poorly understood. Here, we present evidence of roughly similar nodules occurring in the Spanish large Azuara and Rubielos de la Cérida impact structures where different from the Weaubleau “round rocks” they can be observed how they developed in situ.

Fig. 1. Weaubleau “round rock”. The typical and most common size runs from golf-balls to grapefruit. Photo: Harmil, WIKIMEDIA COMMONS.

Continue reading “The Weaubleau impact structure “round rocks” (“Missouri rock balls”, “Weaubleau eggs”): possible analogues in the Spanish Azuara/Rubielos de la Cérida impact structures.”

Impact deposit at the Moneva reservoir, Azuara impact structure (Spain)

Impact deposit at the Moneva reservoir, Azuara impact structure (Spain)

by Ferran Claudin, Daniel Gorgas & Kord Ernstson (March 2013)

In 2012 in the course of a field trip around the Moneva reservoir (Fig. 1, 2) one of the authors, Daniel Gorgas from Azuara who already in the past had frequently contributed important geologic observations to the Azuara impact research, came across a geologic setting that appeared to drastically deviate from the “normal” deposits well known to him as the extended young Tertiary sediments within the Azuara structure. Following his report we began to study the geological maps of the area around the reservoir (Fig. 2, 3) and then to investigate the outcrops in more detail.

Google Earth Azuara impact structure

Fig. 1. Location map for the investigated outcrops at the Moneva reservoir within the Azuara impact structure (roughly outlined by a dashed circle).  Continue reading “Impact deposit at the Moneva reservoir, Azuara impact structure (Spain)”

Suspected Saarland impact and Chiemgau impact – do they form a pair?

Saarland impact and Chiemgau impact locations on the map of Germany

Chiemgau impact: is there a parallel with the Saarland region?

The earlier stated assumption that the Chiemgau impact may have a counterpart in the Saarland region

has been strengthened by new finds and new geologic and petrographic features. A respective update article may be clicked here: