Zhamanshin meteorit crater
Tour and excursion to Zhamanshin crater -
Zhamanshin is an impact crater in the Irgiz district of the Aktobe region of the Republic of Kazakhstan. The size of the inner ring of the crater is about 7 × 7 km, there is also a less pronounced outer ring.
Tourist information -
According to the results of radioisotope analysis, the age of the crater is about 1 million years (according to other estimates - up to 53 million years). According to the most widely accepted hypothesis, it was formed as a result of a meteorite (possibly an asteroid or comet nucleus) falling to Earth with a diameter of 200 to 400 meters, which evaporated during the explosion. At the time of the explosion, the ambient temperature in the area of the fall reached 1700 ° C. Immediately after the explosion, the depth of the crater was at least 500 meters (possibly even 1000 meters). At present, the maximum height difference is 250-300 meters.
How to get there -
Zhamanshin was first studied by scientists A. Yanshin and V. Vakhrameev in 1937-1939. Geologists studied and eventually found Paleozoic-era particles on the earth's surface. For a number of years - in 1946, 1957, 1961 and 1963, they studied the crater. After many years of research, the Moscow professor Pavel Vasilyevich Florensky, to whom the soil samples were sent, came to the conclusion in 1975-1976 that a meteorite fell and disappeared in Zhamanshin, and the scientist gave the names "irgizite" and "zhamanshinite" to the rocks formed during a powerful collision.
For many years, a scientist at the Institute of Geology and Geophysics of the Siberian Branch of the Russian Academy of Sciences, Doctor of Geological and Mineralogical Sciences, E.P. Isoh, has been developing a hypothesis for the origin of tektites, according to which the age of the crater is about 10 thousand years. This hypothesis makes it possible to eliminate the contradiction between the radiogenic age of the crater tektites and the age of the geological rocks around the crater, which contain the impact layer associated with the crater formation.
This is one of the few tektite (irgizite) deposits on Earth and the only crater in which tektites and impactites are simultaneously found. Foamed leshatelierite (quartz glass) and minerals containing trivalent titanium are also found in the crater.
The crater is a nature reserve in the Irgiz region. As a tourist attraction, it is popular with tourists.