Encyclopedia of Planetary Landforms

2015 Edition
| Editors: Henrik Hargitai, Ákos Kereszturi

Secondary Crater

Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-3134-3_339

Definition

Secondary craters are shallow and elongate impact craters formed by fragments ejected by a hypervelocity impact that formed a larger (primary) impact crater.

Synonyms

Gouge (obsolete); Gruben (1837 Mädler, obsolete); Pit (Neison 1876 obsolete); Secondary

Description

Their shape is elongate or irregular. Secondary craters are shallower than primary ones. Adjacent secondaries tend to be more shallow than distant secondaries (Bierhaus and Schenk 2010). They often have a V-shaped ridge ( herringbone pattern) that points toward the parent crater. This V-shaped ejecta gives them a splashed appearance. Coalesced secondary craters form a zone beyond the continuous ejecta blanket ( secondary crater field). The size of secondary craters becomes larger with increasing primary crater size. Secondary craters are also found beyond the edge of layered ejecta morphology of layered ejecta craters on Mars ( combination ejecta).

Subtypes

  1. (1)

    Adjacent secondary: they typically form a distinct...

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2015

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.NASA Ames Research Center/NPPMoffett FieldUSA