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Meteor Crater (a.k.a. Barringer Crater), Arizona.



Craters and Buttes Part One
Nov 30, 2009

Craters often have flat bottoms and forty-five degree slopes. Buttes often exhibit forty-five degree shoulders and flat tops.

It would seem to be inevitable that craters are formed when an object strikes some other solid surface and explodes, blasting material up and out, leaving a somewhat conical hole. That is the accepted explanation for locations such as Meteor Crater.

Consensus opinions state that Meteor Crater was formed when a chunk of nickel-iron approximately 50 meters in diameter, weighing 300,000 tons, slammed into the Arizona desert at a speed of 12 kilometers per second. The object is thought to have detonated with a force equal to 2.5 megatons—almost as large as early hydrogen bomb tests conducted in the Pacific.

Previous Picture of the Day articles have indicated, however, that there are several anomalous features associated with craters on Earth, as well as on other celestial bodies. In the case of Meteor Crater, the 300,000 tons of nickel-iron has vanished. Despite years of extensive drilling and exploration, all that could be retrieved was a handful of tiny iron spherules scattered throughout the surrounding terrain. No large fragments have ever been found.

According to the Electric Universe hypothesis, there is another way for craters to form. Rather than kinetic energy and thermal expansion, an electric arc discharge could have carved the crater in the blink of an eye, disintegrating the rock strata and sending it up the secondary discharge channel, sorted according to mineral content. Evidence for the electric discharge hypothesis would be a stratification reversal in the debris that was scattered by the event.

Daniel Barringer, for whom the crater is also named, wrote: “Different types of rocks in the rim and on the surrounding plain appeared to have been deposited in the opposite order from their order in the underlying rock beds.”

Anomalies in Meteor Crater are found in other craters around the world. There is a significant quantity of glassified minerals inside the pit and in the rim walls, including dense, hard, transparent quartzite, generally uniform in texture, without any graining or intrusions. It looks similar to the famous Egyptian "desert glass" discovered in the Great Sand Sea of Africa, as well as the fractured, multi-meter thick sheets of fused silica that splashed over the rim of Popigai Crater in Siberia.

There are brachiated trenches cut into the landscape around Meteor Crater, and around other circular formations on Earth. The many moons of Jupiter and Saturn, as well as Earth's Moon, reveal so-called "sinuous rilles" intersecting, bifurcating, and encircling large craters. It is as if the craters and the rilles require each other's presence, since there are few examples where the two are not present together.

Electric discharges create Lichtenberg figures (dendritic channels) by following the paths of least resistance. Electricity finds its way through the rock strata due to conductivity. The current flow ignores gravity and blows out meandering river-like structures that climb hills and descend into valleys. Many times, they start or end with craters.

What was it that initiated a spark of such colossal dimension? Where could a lightning stroke large enough to generate forces equivalent to our mightiest weapons originate?

Some electrical theorists speculate that a meteor did provide the trigger for the thunderbolt's release, but not in a mechanical way. Instead, as a previous Picture of the Day suggested, the meteor will begin to experience plasma flow instabilities on its exterior, while current surges penetrate the nickel-iron core.

The meteor will build up a huge potential as it penetrates deeper into the electromagnetic fields of Earth (or any other body with a plasmasphere). If the current flow becomes too extreme, the metallo-crystalline matrix of the meteor will destabilize and breakdown in a violent outburst of electricity. A lightning bolt leader will reach from the disintegrating bolide to the ground, while the upward secondary stroke completes the circuit.

Others see things differently and assign the formation of Meteor Crater to that age of terror when the catastrophic encounters with our planetary neighbors caused worldwide cataclysms, including resurfacing large areas of our planet.

Stephen Smith


SPECIAL NOTE - **New Volumes Available:
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Visitors to the site have often wondered whether they could fully appreciate the Electric Universe without further formal education. The answer is given by these exquisitely designed books. Readers from virtually all backgrounds and education levels will find them easy to comprehend, from start to finish.

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