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Earth Impact Database Sorted by : | Name | Diameter | Age |


Rio Cuarto

Crater Name
Diameter (km)
Age (Ma)*
Target Rock**
Bolide Type***
Rio Cuarto
S 32° 52'
W 64° 14'
< 0.1
Chondrite (H)

NOTE: There is currently some controversy as to whether these structures are actually produced by impacts (Schultz and Lianza, 1992), or by aeolian surficial processes, which form many similar features in that region (Bland et al., 2001, 2002; Melosh, 2002)


Aerial Photograph

Photograph of the central uplift of one of the craters



Aldahan, A. A., Koeberl, C., Göran Possnert, G. and Schultz,P., 10Be and chemistry of impactites and target materials from the Rio Cuarto crater field, Argentina: Evidence for surficial cratering and melting. GFF, v. 119, pp. 67-72. 1997.
Aldahan, A. A., Göran Possnert, G., Koeberl, C. and Schultz,P., Cosmogenic Be-10 in impact glass and target materials from the Rio Cuarto craters, Argentina (abstract). 4th International Workshop of the ESF Scientific Network on "Impact Cratering and Evolution of Planet Earth". The Role of Impacts on the Evolution of the Atmosphere and Biosphere with Regard to Short- and Long-Term Changes, pp. 23-25. 1995.
Beatty, J. K., Did bland rush to conclusions? Controversy brewing over Rio Cuarto craters. Sky & Telescope, 14 May 2002 http://skyandtelescope.com/news/current/article_602_1.asp. 2002.
Bland, P. A., de Souza Filho, C.R., Jull, A.J.T., Kelley, S.P., Hough, R.M., Artemieva, N.A., Pierazzo, E., Coniglio, J., Pinotti, L., Evers, V.,A.T.Kearsley., A Possible Tektite Strewn Field in the Argentinian Pampa, Science, vol.296, 10 May. 2002.
Bland, P. A., Souza, C.R.,de, Hough, R.M., Pierazzo, E., Coniglio, J., Pinotti, L., Jull, A.J.T. and Evers,V., The Rio Cuarto Crater Field re-visited: Remote Sensing imagery analysis and new field observations. 64th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting. 2001.
Bunch, T. E., Schultz, P. H., A study of the Rio Cuarto loess impactites and chondritic impactor (abstract). Lunar and Planetary Science XXIII, pp. 179-180. 1992.
Cockell, C. S., Lee, P., The Biology of Impact Craters - a review. Biol. Rev., 77, P. 279 - 310. 2002.
de Souza Filho, C.R., Bland, P. A., Proven, Probably and Possible Impact Craters in South America Revealed by Aster and SRTM Data and Image Processing Techniques. 67th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting. 2004.
Grant, J. A., Schultz, P. H., Martian crater degradation by eolian processes: Analogy with the Rio Cuarto crater field, Argentina (abstract). Lunar and Planetary Science XXIV, pp. 559-560. 1993.
Grant, J. A., Schultz, P. H., Gradation of the Rio Curato crater field, Argentina (abstract). Lunar and Planetary Science XXIII, pp. 439-440. 1992.
Koeberl, C., Schultz, P. H., Chemical composition of meteoritic and impactite samples from the Rio Cuarto Craters, Argentina (abstract). Lunar and Planetary Science XXIII, pp. 707-708. 1992.
Levine, J., Arazi, A. , Faestermann, T. , Fenandez Niello, J. O. , Korschinek, G. , La Gamma, A. M. G. , Negri, A. , Rugel, G. , Steier, P. and Wallner, A., Terrestrial Age Determination of an Achondrite from Rio Cuarto, Argentina, Lunar and Planetary Science XXXVIII (1362.pdf). 2007.
Lianza, R. E., Discovering the crater. Sky & Telescope, p. 392. 1992.
Melosh, H. J., Traces of an unusual impact. Science, v.296, p.1037-1038. 2002.
Schultz, P. H., Koeberl, C., Bunch, T., Grant, J. and Collins,W., Ground truth for oblique impact processes: New insight form the Rio Cuarto, Argentina, crater field. Geology, v. 22, pp. 889-892. 1994.
Schultz, P. H., Koeberl, C. and Bunch,T., Shock and impactor signatures in Rio Cuarto impactites, Argentina (abstract). Meteoritics, v. 28, pp. 432-433. 1993.
Schultz, P. H., Lianza, R. E., Recent grazing impacts on the Earth recorded in the Rio Cuarto crater field, Argentina. Nature, v. 355, pp. 234-237. 1992.
Schultz, P. H., Grant, J., Collins, W., Lopez, J.P. and Toselli,A.J., Rio Cuarto crater field (abstract). Lunar and Planetary Science XXIII, pp. 1237-1238. 1992.
Schultz, P. H., Beatty, J. K., Teardrops on the Pampas. Sky & Telescope, pp. 387-392. 1992.
Serefiddin, F., Herzog, G. F. , Schultz, P. H. and Schultz, L., Exposure Histories of Three Meteorites from Rio Cuarto, Argentina, 68th Annual Meteoritical Society Meeting (5292.pdf). 2005.


* pre-1977 K-Ar, Ar-Ar and Rb-Sr ages recalculated using the decay constants of Steiger and Jager (1977) Ages in millions of years (Ma) before present.

** Abbreviations: C - Crystalline Target; C-Ms - Metasedimentary Target; M - Mixed Target (i.e.sedimentary strata overlying crystalline basement); S - sedimentary target (i.e. no crystalline rocks affected by the impact event). From Osinski. G. R., Spray J. G., and Grieve R. A. F. 2007. Impact melting in sedimentary target rocks: A synthesis. In The Sedimentary Record of Meteorite Impacts, Geological Society of America Special Paper. Editors: Evans K. Horton W., King D., Morrow J., and Warme J. Geological Society of America: Boulder, in press.

From Koeberl,C. Identification of meteoritic components in impactites. 1998, Koeberl, C. The Geochemistry and Cosmochemistry of Impacts. 2007 and PASSC Files. (IAB, IIIAB, IIIB, IIID - Iron Meteorite)



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