I'm inclined to agree with the first NASA assessment — that it is a single strike that exposed multiple layering of dense and less-dense materials,
probably layers of relatively loose surface soil and much denser ice.
This would account for the near-identical configuration of the second strike to the lower right. Same sort of impact layering, at what appears to be
the same depths.
I'm a member of the IMCA (International Meteorite Collectors Association), and we frequently discuss impact anomalies — there are more weird
craters than you might imagine, right here on Earth.
Take, for example, the most famous impact crater on the planet, the great Barringer Crater (aka Cañon Diablo or, simply, Meteor Crater) in Arizona.
You have to see the thing from directly above to appreciate how odd it is...
The Barringer Crater, in case it doesn't immediately jump out at you, is square
Some people argue, Oh, that's just due to erosion
— However, wind and rain don't erode things square
. Wind and rain tend to
erode things round
, obliterating right angles.
Try this, go dig two holes in your back yard, one perfectly square, and one perfectly circular. Turn on your water sprinkler and leave it on for 6
At the end of the 6 months, you won't have 1 square hole and 1 circular hole in your back yard, and you won't have 2 square holes.
You'll have 2 circular craters.
So, given what we think we know about terrestrial erosion, the Barringer Crater should be perfectly circular
following 50,000 years of Earthly
erosion. Unless, perhaps, the Barringer Crater started out as a perfectly square excavation
, and the climatic conditions of the Southwest
simply didn't produce enough erosion to completely eliminate the right-angles.
One thing we know about Barringer is that no meteoritic mass was ever discovered or detected beneath the crater floor. The official explanation is
that the giant iron meteor was completely destroyed on impact, scattering the whole area with tiny iron fragments, but no mass of iron underneath the
crater floor, as has been discovered at other
impact sites around the world.
Barringer Crater is a real mystery right here on Earth. But it's just a tourist attraction.
— Doc Velocity
[edit on 8/2/2010 by Doc Velocity]