Impact origin of the ‘Domain du Meteor’-crater, France. Compelling mineralogical and geophysical evidence for an unrecognized destructive event in the heart of Europe

F.E. Brenker and A. Junge

54th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference 2023

PDF (abstract 1910)

“Small impact craters (< 300m) are quite rare, and proof of an impact origin is difficult to obtain1-5, especially if remnants of the impactor material are missing. The EarthImpactDatabase (EID), hosted in the Planetary and Space Science Centre (PASSC) at the University of New Brunswick, Canada, and recent reviews6-7 lists only three, though much larger, structures in West and Central-Europe as confirmed high velocity impact crater, namely Rochechouart (France), Nördlinger Ries and Steinheimer Becken (both in Germany). Although smaller impact structures should be much more frequent, no proof for even a single confirmed small crater structure is reported6-7. In this contribution, for the first time, we present compelling mineralogical and geophysical evidence for a small crater structure (about 200m wide) in Southern France, which might be part of a crater field, the Herault impact structure6. The data presented here were collected for the largest structure, the “Domaine du Meteore”-crater formally known as ”le Clot”.