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Origin of the degassing pipes at the Ries impact structure and implications for impact‐induced alteration on Mars and other planetary bodies

Caudill, Christy and Osinski, Gordon R. and Greenberger, Rebecca N. and Tornabene, Livio L. and Longstaffe, Fred J. and Flemming, Roberta L. and Ehlmann, Bethany L. (2021) Origin of the degassing pipes at the Ries impact structure and implications for impact‐induced alteration on Mars and other planetary bodies. Meteoritics and Planetary Science, 56 (2). pp. 404-422. ISSN 1086-9379. doi:10.1111/maps.13600.

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The impact melt‐bearing breccias at the Ries impact structure, Germany, host degassing pipes: vertical structures that are inferred to represent conduits along which gases and fluids escaped to the surface, consistent with hydrothermal activity that occurs soon after an impact event. Although the presence of degassing pipes has been recognized within the well‐preserved and long‐studied ejecta deposits at the Ries, a detailed mineralogical study of their alteration mineralogy, as an avenue to elucidate their origins, has not been conducted to date. Through the application of high‐resolution in situ reflectance imaging spectroscopy and X‐ray diffraction, this study shows for the first time that the degassing pipe interiors and associated alteration are comprised of hydrated and hydroxylated silicates (i.e., Fe/Mg smectitic clay minerals with chloritic or other hydroxy‐interlayered material) as secondary hydrothermal mineral phases. This study spatially extends the known effects of impact hydrothermal activity into the ejecta deposits, beyond the crater rim. It has been suggested that the degassing pipes at the Ries are analogous to crater‐related pit clusters observed in impact melt‐bearing deposits on Mars, Ceres, and Vesta. The results of this work may inform on the presence of crustal volatiles and their interaction during the impact process on rocky bodies throughout the solar system. The Mars 2020 Perseverance rover may have the opportunity to investigate impact‐related features in situ; if so, this work suggests that such investigations may provide key information on the origin and formation of clay minerals on Mars as well as hold exciting implications for future Mars exploration.

Item Type:Article
Related URLs:
URLURL TypeDescription
Caudill, Christy0000-0003-2587-1147
Osinski, Gordon R.0000-0002-1832-5925
Greenberger, Rebecca N.0000-0003-1583-0261
Tornabene, Livio L.0000-0002-1479-6711
Ehlmann, Bethany L.0000-0002-2745-3240
Additional Information:© 2021 The Meteoritical Society (MET). Issue Online: 02 April 2021; Version of Record online: 15 February 2021; Manuscript accepted: 21 October 2020; Manuscript received: 03 January 2020. Funding support for this project was provided by the Natural Science and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) through Vanier Canada Graduate Scholarship (Vanier CGS) funding and NSERC Discovery Grant Funding (FJL). Field support, logistics, and quarry access were generously accommodated by ZERIN RiesKrater Museum, Germany, as well as access to the core curated by the Museum; we thank them for their valuable contribution to this work. We thank Haley Sapers, Lu Pan, Matthew Svennson, and Jen Ronholm for field assistance. This is Laboratory for Stable Isotope Science Contribution #376. RNG was supported by a NASA Postdoctoral Program Fellowship administered by Universities Space Research Association with an appointment at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. BLE acknowledges funding from a Rose Hills Foundation grant. Editorial Handling: Dr. Jeffrey Plescia.
Funding AgencyGrant Number
Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC)UNSPECIFIED
NASA Postdoctoral ProgramUNSPECIFIED
Rose Hills FoundationUNSPECIFIED
Issue or Number:2
Record Number:CaltechAUTHORS:20210217-075339076
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Official Citation:Caudill, C., Osinski, G.R., Greenberger, R.N., Tornabene, L.L., Longstaffe, F.J., Flemming, R.L. and Ehlmann, B.L. (2021), Origin of the degassing pipes at the Ries impact structure and implications for impact‐induced alteration on Mars and other planetary bodies. Meteorit Planet Sci, 56: 404-422.
Usage Policy:No commercial reproduction, distribution, display or performance rights in this work are provided.
ID Code:108084
Deposited By: Tony Diaz
Deposited On:18 Feb 2021 19:39
Last Modified:07 Apr 2021 19:27

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