Rochechouart (impactite)

 15.00 150.00


age of the crater : about 207 million years
diameter of the main crater : recent studies extend the crater diameter to 40 km !
depth of the crater (at the origin) : 700 m
initial mass of the meteorite that hit the ground : about 6 billion tons
energy of impact : 14 million time the one of an atomic bomb

The Rochechouart impact structure is composed of central sub circular zone approximately 12 km in diameter exposing breccias and impact melt rocks (represented in grey on the map), and an annular diffuse zone where breccia dykes, intense fracturing, para-authochonous breccias are locally encountered in the crystalline rocks forming the basement of the crater. The central deposits fill and landmark the initial crater low. From a stratigraphical point of view, the impact deposits form a flat quasi horizontal continuous blanket. Yet the deposit is entailed by river valleys providing unique series of cross sections within the crater fill down to the crater floor and below.

Despite of the erosion, the sequence of impactite lithologies is exceptionally complete at Rochechouart. All typologies of impactites and the whole sequence of shock metamorphic features are represented both in the deposits and in target.

Since 2008, it is forbidden to get rocks from the crater area so these will become more and more rare.

Additional information

Weight N/A

small part slice, 252g, 468g, 560g, 1550g