John Parnell, Gordon R. Osinski, Pascal Lee, Paul F. Green, Martin J. Baron; Thermal alteration of organic matter in an impact crater and the duration of postimpact heating. Geology ; 33 (5): 373–376. doi: https://doi.org/10.1130/G21204.1
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The 24-km-diameter Tertiary Haughton impact structure formed in rocks that contained preexisting liquid hydrocarbons. Biomarker ratios in the hydrocarbons show a consistent pattern of variation in degree of heating across the structure. The heating reached a maximum at the crater center and is attributed to hydrothermal activity following impact. Kinetic modeling suggests a time scale of ∼5 k.y. for the heating, at a maximum temperature of 210 °C. The short time scale suggests that in moderate-sized craters, which are abundant on Mars, heating is not so extensive that fossil or extant organic matter would be obliterated.