Number 18: 22/11/2002
A scientific publication by SGF and NEODyS

Special: the first impact crater discovered in Italy

The discovery of the Sirente crater field
by Jens Ormö, Angelo Pio Rossi, and Goro Komatsu

In the Prati del Sirente plain in the heart of the Abruzzo mountains, a small circular lake is clearly visible. A prominent ridge encircles the lake. After the years of research that followed the discovery, and which we will describe in this article, the lake in Prati del Sirente is now proposed to be the first impact crater ever discoverd in Italy...

A photo reportage of the discovery...

...and a 3d interactive model of the crater

Here is a 3d interactive model of the Sirente crater made using Jens Ormo and cooworkers data .You can turn it around with the left button of your mouse, zoom it in and out with the "+" and "-" keys, reset the camera with the "b" button.
Install the Macromedia plugin (installation is automatic) and have fun..

Other articles: about Eros craterization

Craters (or lack of craters) on Eros
by Clark R. Chapman - Southwest Research Institute

No asteroid had been clearly seen at quite the close-up resolutions achieved once NEAR Shoemaker went into orbit around Eros... Most scientists, like myself, expected that Eros' saturated crater populations would extend down to the smallest craters revealed to the cameras. But we were astounded to discover that, in the final pictures taken during the experimental end-of-mission landing, essentially no craters at all could be seen with sizes ranging from several meters down to several centimeters. Why? There are some interesting scientific hypothesys...

Click on the flag to go to the version. The version is not yet available


Editor: Nanni Riccobono
Assistant Editor, web master and graphics: Livia Giacomini (

Spaceguard Foundation (SGF) is a private, non profit scientific organization aimed at supporting and co-ordinating NEO researches in the world.
NEO Dynamic Site (NEODyS) is a service offered by the University of Pisa (Italy). It provides catalogues, computation of orbits, and projection of the behavior of NEOs in the future, in order to identify possible impacts in advance.
Our sponsors:
The Astronomic Observatory of Mallorca (OAM)

Images of the heading: courtesy of NASA