Two extraterrestrial dust horizons found in the Dome Fuji ice core, East Antarctica

Keiji Misawa, Mika Kohno, Takayuki Tomiyama, Takaaki Noguchi, Tomoki Nakamura, Keisuke Nagao, Takashi Mikouchi, Kunihiko Nishiizumi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

12 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Two silicate-rich dust layers were found in the Dome Fuji ice core in East Antarctica, at Marine Isotope Stages 12 and 13. Morphologies, textures, and chemical compositions of constituent particles reveal that they are high-temperature melting products and are of extraterrestrial origin. Because similar layers were found ∼ 2000 km east of Dome Fuji, at EPICA (European Project for Ice Coring in Antarctica)-Dome C, particles must have rained down over a wide area 434 and 481 ka. The strewn fields occurred over an area of at least 3 × 106 km2. Chemical compositions of constituent phases and oxygen isotopic composition of olivines suggest that the upper dust layer was produced by a high-temperature interaction between silicate-rich melt and water vapor due to an impact explosion or an aerial burst of a chondritic meteoroid on the inland East Antarctic ice sheet. An estimated total mass of the impactor, on the basis of particle flux and distribution area, is at least 3 × 109 kg. A possible parent material of the lower dust layer is a fragment of friable primitive asteroid or comet. A hypervelocity impact of asteroidal/cometary material on the upper atmosphere and an explosion might have produced aggregates of sub-μm to μm-sized spherules. Total mass of the parent material of the lower layer must exceed 1 × 109 kg. The two extraterrestrial horizons, each a few millimeters in thickness, represent regional or global meteoritic events not identified previously in the Southern Hemisphere.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)287-297
Number of pages11
JournalEarth and Planetary Science Letters
Volume289
Issue number1-2
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 15 2010

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Ice
Domes
Antarctic regions
domes
ice core
dome
horizon
Dust
Silicates
ice
dust
Explosions
Chemical analysis
Asteroids
parent material
Upper atmosphere
Steam
explosions
explosion
silicates

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Geophysics
  • Geochemistry and Petrology
  • Earth and Planetary Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Space and Planetary Science

Cite this

Two extraterrestrial dust horizons found in the Dome Fuji ice core, East Antarctica. / Misawa, Keiji; Kohno, Mika; Tomiyama, Takayuki; Noguchi, Takaaki; Nakamura, Tomoki; Nagao, Keisuke; Mikouchi, Takashi; Nishiizumi, Kunihiko.

In: Earth and Planetary Science Letters, Vol. 289, No. 1-2, 15.01.2010, p. 287-297.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Misawa, K, Kohno, M, Tomiyama, T, Noguchi, T, Nakamura, T, Nagao, K, Mikouchi, T & Nishiizumi, K 2010, 'Two extraterrestrial dust horizons found in the Dome Fuji ice core, East Antarctica', Earth and Planetary Science Letters, vol. 289, no. 1-2, pp. 287-297. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.epsl.2009.11.016
Misawa, Keiji ; Kohno, Mika ; Tomiyama, Takayuki ; Noguchi, Takaaki ; Nakamura, Tomoki ; Nagao, Keisuke ; Mikouchi, Takashi ; Nishiizumi, Kunihiko. / Two extraterrestrial dust horizons found in the Dome Fuji ice core, East Antarctica. In: Earth and Planetary Science Letters. 2010 ; Vol. 289, No. 1-2. pp. 287-297.
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