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Seismic images of Chicxulub impact melt sheet and comparison with the Sudbury Structure

P. J. Barton, R. A. F. Grieve, J. V. Morgan, A. T. Surendra, P. M. Vermeesch, G. L. Christeson, S. P. S. Gulick and M. R. Warner
Seismic images of Chicxulub impact melt sheet and comparison with the Sudbury Structure (in Large meteorite impacts and planetary evolution IV, Roger L. Gibson (editor) and Wolf Uwe Reimold (editor))
Special Paper - Geological Society of America (September 2010) 465: 103-113


Chicxulub is the only known impact structure on Earth with a fully preserved peak ring, and it forms an important natural laboratory for the study of large impact structures and understanding of large-scale cratering on Earth and other planets. Seismic data collected in 1996 and 2005 reveal detailed images of the uppermost crater in the central basin at Chicxulub. Seismic reflection profiles show a reflective layer approximately 1 km beneath the apparent crater floor, topped by upwardly concave reflectors interpreted as saucer-shaped sills. The upper part of this reflective layer is coincident with a thin high-velocity layer identified by analyzing refractions on the 6 km seismic streamer data. The high-velocity layer is almost horizontal and appears to be contained within the peak ring structure. We argue that this reflective layer is the predicted coherent melt sheet formed during impact, and it may be comparable with the unit known as the Sudbury Igneous Complex at the Sudbury impact structure. The Sudbury Igneous Complex, interpreted as a differentiated impact melt sheet, appears to have a similar scale and geometry, and an uppermost lithological sequence consisting of a high velocity layer at the top and a velocity inversion beneath. This comparison suggests that the Chicxulub impact structure also contains a coherent differentiated melt sheet.

ISSN: 0072-1077
EISSN: 2331-219X
Serial Title: Special Paper - Geological Society of America
Serial Volume: 465
Title: Seismic images of Chicxulub impact melt sheet and comparison with the Sudbury Structure
Title: Large meteorite impacts and planetary evolution IV
Author(s): Barton, P. J.Grieve, R. A. F.Morgan, J. V.Surendra, A. T.Vermeesch, P. M.Christeson, G. L.Gulick, S. P. S.Warner, M. R.
Author(s): Gibson, Roger L.editor
Author(s): Reimold, Wolf Uweeditor
Affiliation: University of Cambridge, Bullard Laboratories, Cambridge, United Kingdom
Affiliation: University of the Witwatersrand, School of Geosciences, Johannesburg, South Africa
Pages: 103-113
Published: 201009
Text Language: English
Publisher: Geological Society of America (GSA), Boulder, CO, United States
References: 49
Accession Number: 2011-013820
Categories: GeomorphologyApplied geophysics
Document Type: Serial
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. sects., strat. col., 1 table, sketch maps
N46°25'00" - N46°49'60", W81°40'00" - W80°45'00"
Secondary Affiliation: Leibniz Institute at Humbaldt University Berlin, DEU, GermanyGeological Survey of Canada, CAN, CanadaImperial College, GBR, United KingdomUniversity of Texas at Austin, USA, United States
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2017, American Geosciences Institute. Reference includes data supplied by the Geological Society of America, Boulder, CO, United States
Update Code: 201109
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