Geoparks of the World

Meteorite Impact!

The Danger from Space and South Africa's Mega-Impact The Vredefort Structure

Authors: Reimold, Wolf Uwe, Gibson, Roger Lawrence

  • A guide to one of the world's oldest and biggest meteorite impact structures

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eBook $109.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-642-10464-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-642-10463-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Online orders shipping within 2-3 days.
About this book

When geologists first wandered the spectacular ring of hills straddling the Vaal River north of Vredefort nearly 150 years ago, they immediately recognised that the unusually shattered and uptilted rocks bore witness to an exceptionally violent event in the distant past. However, it took more than a century of painstaking work before the accumulated evidence revealed the cause — the impact with Earth of a meteorite, the size of a mountain, about 2 020 million years ago. This book presents an opportunity to travel back in time to this remarkable event — arguably the single greatest geological catastrophe yet uncovered on our planet. It presents an easy to read account of the ten minutes that, quite literally, shook the world. Readers are taken both to the farthest reaches of our Solar System and back to its beginnings in a search for the source of meteorites. The book shows how the immense violence of the event and aeons of slow erosion have combined to provide us with a unique window onto the early history of planet Earth and into the deep levels of its interior. It goes on to show how the lessons learned from the rocks around Vredefort are being used throughout the world to teach a new generation of scientists of the reality, and danger, of similar events in the future. Finally, this book reviews more than 200 000 years of human habitation in this area of exceptional natural beauty and biodiversity. This history starts with the early San hunters, whose graceful art survives today on rocks formed during the impact event. The arrivals and settlements of Sotho, Tswana, Afrikaner and British settlers are discussed, including the landmark wars that affected the region over the last three centuries. This book documents the rich geological, archaeological, cultural and botanical heritage presented by the Vredefort region in an easily digestible manner, opening up the information to non- geoscientists. It concludes with a guide to key sites that highlight the heritage of this area, which was proclaimed a World Heritage Site in July 2005.

Reviews

From the reviews of the third edition:

“Third edition of Meteorite Impact! … by Reimold (Museum for Natural History, Humboldt Univ., Germany) and Gibson (Univ. of the Witwatersrand, South Africa) is two things. First, it is an interesting, comprehensive field guide to an exceptional geologic site that warrants further exploration and interest. Second, it is a primer on Earth hazards with the typical popular-level approach. … content gives the reader an easily understandable and personable on-site perspective to this complex area. … Summing Up: Recommended. Lower- and upper-division undergraduates and general readers.” (L. R. Johnston, Choice, Vol. 48 (9), May, 2011)

Table of contents (9 chapters)

  • The Early History of Earth — Impact, Volcanoes and Early Life

    Reimold, Wolf Uwe (et al.)

    Pages 14-47

  • Chaos and Catastrophe

    Reimold, Wolf Uwe (et al.)

    Pages 48-99

  • The Impact Heritage of Southern Africa

    Reimold, Wolf Uwe (et al.)

    Pages 100-115

  • Vredefort: The Largest and Oldest Impact Structure in the World

    Reimold, Wolf Uwe (et al.)

    Pages 116-161

  • The Recent History of the Vredefort Dome Area

    Reimold, Wolf Uwe (et al.)

    Pages 162-213

Buy this book

eBook $109.00
price for USA (gross)
  • ISBN 978-3-642-10464-0
  • Digitally watermarked, DRM-free
  • Included format: PDF
  • ebooks can be used on all reading devices
  • Immediate eBook download after purchase
Softcover $149.00
price for USA
  • ISBN 978-3-642-10463-3
  • Free shipping for individuals worldwide
  • Online orders shipping within 2-3 days.
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Bibliographic Information

Bibliographic Information
Book Title
Meteorite Impact!
Book Subtitle
The Danger from Space and South Africa's Mega-Impact The Vredefort Structure
Authors
Series Title
Geoparks of the World
Series Volume
1
Copyright
2010
Publisher
Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
Copyright Holder
Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg
eBook ISBN
978-3-642-10464-0
DOI
10.1007/978-3-642-10464-0
Softcover ISBN
978-3-642-10463-3
Series ISSN
2190-6173
Edition Number
3
Number of Pages
XI, 342
Number of Illustrations and Tables
300 illustrations in colour
Additional Information
Originally published by Chris van Rensburg Publications (Pty) Ltd and the Council for Geoscience, 2005
Topics