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Title: The newly confirmed Luizi impact structure, Democratic Republic of Congo--Insights into central uplift formation and post-impact erosion
Authors: Ludovic Ferrière, François R.T. Lubala, Gordon R. Osinski, and Pierre K. Kaseti

Rocks exposed within the uplifted central part of meteorite impact structures come from significant stratigraphic depths, in some cases as much as several kilometres. On Earth, central uplifts are commonly the final and only feature of an impact crater that remains after the rest of the structure is lost to erosion. However, the crater-forming process that results in the formation of intricate features such as central peak and peak rings is poorly understood. Much of our knowledge is based on extraterrestrial observations; as on Earth, there are very few unequivocal examples of impact craters with well-preserved peak and ring morphologies, because of erosion. In this study we describe the ~17-km-diameter Luizi structure (Katanga region, Democratic Republic of Congo), a moderate-sized complex crater, with an intermediate ring (~5.2 km in diameter), and an ~2-km-wide circular central ring around a central depression. For the first time, unique evidence of shock metamorphism, in the form of macro­scopic shatter cones and multiple sets of microscopic planar deformation features in quartz and feldspar grains, is described, confirming the meteorite impact origin of the structure. Our observations at Luizi provide insights into the formation of mid-sized impact craters on Earth, adding to the evidence that, in the case of sedimentary target lithologies, structural ring structures within the central uplift may form by the collapse of an unstable central peak. Given the preservation state of the Luizi crater, it cannot be excluded that structural rings may be a common feature for mid-size craters developed in layered target rocks.

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The scientists think the Luizi crater was made by a meteor more than a kilometre wide that slammed into what is now the DRC at about 72,000 kilometres an hour.
For now it's unclear how old the crater is - the scientists can say only that the affected rocks are about 575 million years old

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Title: The Luizi Structure: Remote Sensing Study of a Possible Impact Crater in Central Africa
Authors: Claeys, Ph.; Chan, J. C.-W.; Dujardin, R.

A remote sensing study of the Luizi structure in Katanga, Democratic Republic of Congo, shows morphological features such as rim and central uplift compatible with an impact crater origin.

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Latitude: 10°10'13.5"S, Longitude: 28°00'27.0"E

Google Earth file (1kb, kmz)

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Overlaying the edge of the rift valley 60 km west of the Luapula Swamps is the Luizi structure, a 12.6 km wide series of concentric rings . It is believed to be a meteoritic impact crater (an astrobleme) formed 620 million years ago.
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Huge Impact Crater Found in Remote Congo

A circular depression deep in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) has been confirmed as the first known impact crater in central Africa, a new study says. The find brings the number of known meteor craters on Earth to 182.
The so-called Luizi structure was first described in a German geological report from 1919. But without further fieldwork, it was impossible to say for sure that the 17-kilometer-wide feature had been made by a meteor impact.

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Image credit Ludovic Ferriere and SRTM/NASA

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