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Lurking below more than a mile of ice in Greenland is a circular depression that was very likely left by an ancient impact with a space rock.
The meteor impact crater, reported Feb. 11 in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, is only the second ever discovered in Greenland. It's just 113 miles (183 kilometers) from the other crater in the country, which scientists reported last year.
MacGregor - Live - Science - Sort - Desk
"I was like, 'Really, could there actually be another?'" MacGregor told Live Science. "I sort of stood up from my desk and paced the hallways a little bit."
A GIF showing the surface topography of the new meteor impact crater in Greenland.
Craters - Research - Team - Imagery - Greenland
To find the craters, the research team combined satellite imagery of the Greenland ice sheet and radar-sounding data collected by aircraft. With the radar data, scientists can "see" through the ice using radar waves that hit the bedrock below and bounce back. Most of the data came courtesy of NASA's Terra and Aqua satellites and the space agency's IceBridge aerial survey program; all of that data is publicly available.
"Anyone could have found this," MacGregor said. In fact, some amateur enthusiasts did. After the Hiawatha paper was published in November 2018, some members of the public contacted MacGregor to draw his attention to the second crater, he...
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