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The Chesapeake Meteorite: Message from the Past

Impact Event

Buried hundreds of feet beneath the Chesapeake Bay lies the sixth largest known crater on earth -- a crater created by a 2-mile-wide meteorite that slammed into the Atlantic Ocean 35 million years ago. The meteorite, moving nearly 60 times faster than a fired bullet, caused an impact more powerful than the combined explosion of every nuclear bomb on earth and blasted a crater in the crust of the earth thousands of feet deep and over 53 miles in diameter. This messenger from the past has only recently been explored and the information and consequences from that distant event have greatly affected hundreds of thousands of people living in southeastern Virginia today.

graphic showing bolides heading toward Earth
Copyright 2001, The Virginian-Pilot. Used with permission.

The U.S. Geological Survey Presents a Live Electronic Field Trip

Produced by Prince William Network

Grades 5 - 9, October 9, 2002, Noon - 1:30 PM ET

Live by satellite from New Point, VA, on the Chesapeake Bay
Free live electronic field trip!

Register Online

Visit the Chesapeake Bay Impact Crater Web Page

Selected Online Publications

Adobe Acrobat Reader 4.0 (or newer) may be necessary to view some of these files. If Acrobat Reader 4.0 (or newer) is not installed on your computer, it is available for downloading from the Adobe website.

More USGS Online Publications Relating to the Impact

Bibliography of The Chesapeake Bay Impact Structure and Related Topics

Contact Information

Inquiries about this production should be addressed to:

Diane Noserale


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Page Last Modified: 03-Oct-2002@13:24