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Impact Cratering

  • Thomas Kenkmann
  • Gerwin Wulf
Chapter
Part of the Springer Praxis Books book series (PRAXIS)

Abstract

The evolution of the solar system is intimately related to its collision history that ultimately led to the formation of planets, satellites and minor bodies. Later on impact cratering processes shaped planetary surfaces and delivered the building blocks for the evolution of life on earth via comets and carbonaceous chondrites. After the short period of late heavy bombardment at 3.9 Ga, collision rates remained relatively constant until present due to a steady-state equilibrium between impactor formation in the asteroid belt and consumption of this population by collisions. This chapter sheds light on the physical processes that occur during a hypervelocity impact from the initial contact to the final modifications of a crater structure. Different crater morphologies are presented and influencing factors such as the target composition and the effects of oblique impacts are considered.

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Copyright information

© Springer International Publishing AG 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of FreiburgFreiburgGermany

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