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


Sierra Madera

Crater Name
Diameter (km)
Age (Ma)*
Target Rock**
Bolide Type***
Sierra Madera
Texas, U.S.A.
N 30° 36'
W 102° 55'
< 100


Digital Elevation Model (DEM) of Sierra Madera impact structure showing
central mountains and raised rim (red outline). Diameter of rim is 9.6 km.
Crest of the Central Uplift is 140 m above sea level. DEM compiled by
Matthews from four 7.5' quadrangles (CEED image, Texas)
Click here for link

USGS Aerial photo of the central uplift. Width of photo approximately 13 km.
Submitted by John Wiley

Dietz, R. S., Meteorite impact suggested by shatter cones in rock. Science, v. 131, pp. 1781-1784. 1960.
Donofrio, R. R., Survey of hydrocarbon-producing impact structures in North America: Exploration results to date and potential for discovery in Precambrian basement rock. Ames Structure in Northwest Oklahoma and Similar Features: Origin and Petroleum Production (1995 Symposium), K. S. Johnson and J. A. Campbell, Oklahoma Geological Survey, Norman, Oklahoma, v. Circular 100, pp. 17-29. 1997.
Eggleton, R. E., Shoemaker, E. M., Breccia at Sierra Madera, Texas. U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 424-D, pp. D151-D153. 1961.
Geyer, R. A., Van Lopik, J. R., Reconnaissance geophysical survey of the Sierra Madera, Texas "Dome" and its lunar implications (abstract). American Geophysical Union Transactions, v. 44, p. 76. 1963.
Goldin, T.J., Wuennemann, K., Melosh, H.J., Collins, G.A., Hydrocode modeling of the Sierra Madera impact structure. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, vol. 41, pp.1947-1958. 2006.
Grieve, R. A. F., The record of impact on Earth: Implications for a major Cretaceous/Tertiary impact event. Geological Society of America, Special Paper 190, pp. 25-37. 1982.
Gurov, E. P., Gurova, E. P., Impact structures on the Earth's surface (in Russian). Geologicheskii Zhurnal, v. 47, pp. 117-124. 1987.
Howard, K. A., Offield, T.W. and Wilshire,H.G., Structure of Sierra Madera, Texas, as a guide to central peaks of lunar craters. Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 83, pp. 2795-2808. 1972.
Huson, S., Pope, M., Watkinson, A.J., Foit, F., Deformational features and impact-generated breccia from the Sierra Madera impact structure, West Texas. Geological Society of America Bulletin, vol. 123, pp.371-383. 2011.
Kelly, A. O., A water-impact hypothesis for the Sierra Madera structure in Texas. Meteoritics, v. 3, pp. 79-82. 1966.
Khryanina, L. P., The structure of meteorite craters and their central uplifts (in Russian). Doklady Akademii Nauk SSSR, v. 238, pp. 195-198. 1978.
Lowman, Jr,P.D., Magnetic reconnaissance of Sierra Madera, Texas, and nearby igneous intrusions. New York Academy of Sciences, Annals, v. 123, pp. 1182-1197. 1965.
Masaitis, V. L., Danilin, A.N., Maschak, M.S., Raykhlin, A.I., Selivanovskaya, T.V. and Shadenkov,Ye.M., The Geology of Astroblemes (in Russian). Leningrad, Nedra, 231 p. 1980.
Masaitis, V. L., The principal features of the geology of some astroblemes in foreign countries; mesozoic astroblemes; the Sierra Madera astrobleme. Geologiya Astroblem, Izd. Nedra, Leningrad, USSR, pp. 173-176. 1980.
Shcherban, O. N., A study of meteorite crater formation by comparing results of geological observations and numerical modelling on the computer (in Russian). Visnyk Akademiyi Nauk Ukrayinskoyi RSR, v. 3, pp. 11-19. 1983.
Shoemaker, E. M., Eggleton, R. E., Re-examination of the stratigraphy and structure of Sierra Madera, Texas. U.S. Geological Survey, Astrogeologic Studies, Annual Progress Report, pp. 98-106. 1964.
Van Lopik, J. R., Geyer, R. A., Gravity and magnetic anomalies of the Sierra Madera, Texas, "dome". Science, v. 142, pp. 45-47. 1963.
Wilshire, H. G., Howard, K. A., Structural patterns in central uplifts of cryptoexplosion structures as typified by Sierra Madera. Science, v. 162, pp. 258-261. 1968.
Wilshire, H. G., Howard, K.A. and Offield,T.W., Impact breccias in carbonate rocks, Sierra Madera, Texas. Geological Society of America Bulletin, v. 82, pp. 1009-1018. 1971.
Wilshire, H. G., Offield, T.W., Howard, K.A. and Cummings,D., Geology of the Sierra Madera cryptoexplosion structure, Pecos County, Texas. U.S. Geological Survey Professional Paper 599-H, 42 p. 1972.
Zotkin, I. T., "Moon" craters on the Earth (in Russian). Priroda, v. 9, pp. 95-105. 1969.


* 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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