Talk abstract details

The Chiemgau Impact: An extraordinary case-study for the question of Holocene impacts and their cultural implications
Chiemgau Impact Research Team


Since a few years the question is fiercely and contrary discussed whether in post-glacial time meteorite impacts, or so-called "airbursts" of incoming meteoroids, of remarkable size did happen at all and - if the answer is positive - whether they influenced human cultures. The Chiemgau Impact event may provide an important contribution to the discussion. This event stroke Bavaria (Germany) very probably in the 1st millenium BC and left a field of about 100 craters, ranging from 5 m to 400 m in diameter, and located in a field of about 60 km length and 30 km width. In comparision to other Holocene impacts (like Kaali [Estonia], Campo del Cielo [Argentinia] etc.) the Chiemgau Impact provides extraordinary data by the extension of its crater field, the size of the biggest crater, the exceptional fact that the impact layer is embedded in an archaeological stratigraphy and by its dating.
An overview will be given on the actual state of research from the different disciplines involved (astronomy, geology, geophysics, mineralogy, pedology, archaeology and history). Furthermore the recently known data will be discussed with regard to the question of cultural effects of Holocene impacts.