Traces of an Unusual Impact

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Science  10 May 2002:
Vol. 296, Issue 5570, pp. 1037-1038
DOI: 10.1126/science.1071199

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Ten years ago, depressions in the Pampean plains in Argentina were interpreted as impact craters caused by a low-angle asteroid impact that grazed the Earth surface as recently as 10,000 years ago. In his Perspective, Melosh discusses a new interpretation of these features by Bland et al., who conclude that the depressions themselves are caused by wind but that the impact-produced glass found in the purported craters is part of a tektite strewn-field caused by a much larger, slightly oblique impact that caused glass melted from the surface to be splashed as far as 800 km or more.