Nördlinger Ries

The selectable maps and aerial photographs below present material related to Nördlinger Ries. The Nördlinger Ries is a large circular depression in western Bavaria, Germany, located north of the Danube in the district of Donau-Ries. The city of Nördlingen is located about southwest of the centre of the depression.

The word "Ries" is not a German word; it is believed that the term is derived from Raetia, since the tribe of Raetians lived in the area in pre-Roman times.

Ries impact crater

The depression is interpreted as a meteor impact crater formed about 14.3 million–14.5 million years ago in the Miocene. The crater is most commonly referred to simply as the Ries or Ries crater. The original crater rim had an estimated diameter of . The present floor of the depression is about below the eroded remains of the rim.

It was originally assumed that the Ries was of volcanic origin. In 1960 Eugene Shoemaker and a colleague showed that the depression was caused by meteorite impact. The key evidence was the presence of coesite (shocked quartz), which, in unmetamorphosed rocks can only be formed by the shock pressures associated with meteorite impact. The coesite was found in the building stone (suevite) of the Nördlingen town church, constructed from locally derived stone. The suevite was formed from mesozoic sediments.

Another impact crater, the much smaller (3.8 km diameter) Steinheim crater, is located about west-southwest from the centre of Ries. The two craters are believed to have formed nearly simultaneously by the impact of a binary asteroid.

Recent computer modeling of the impact event indicates that the impactors probably had diameters of about (Ries) and (Steinheim), had a pre-impact separation of some tens of kilometers, and impacted the target area at an angle around 30 to 50 degrees from the surface in a west-southwest to east-northeast direction. The impact velocity is thought to have been about . The resulting explosion had the power of 1.8 million Hiroshima bombs, an energy of roughly 2.4 joules.

The Ries crater impact event is believed to be the source of moldavite tektites found in Bohemia and Moravia (Czech Republic). The tektite melt originated from a sand-rich surface layer and was ejected to distances up to downrange of the crater.

Stone buildings in Nördlingen contain millions of tiny diamonds, all less than across. The impact that caused the Nördlinger Ries crater created an estimated of them when it impacted a local graphite deposit. Stone from this area was quarried and used to build the local buildings.

Street maps and aerial photographs

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Weather forecast (Germany)

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Close places of interest

Bavarian Railway Museum (6.14 km)

The Bavarian Railway Museum (Bayerische Eisenbahnmuseum or BEM) is a railway museum based in the old locomotive sheds at Nördlingen station in Bavaria, Germany. It is home to more than 100 original railway vehicles and has been located in the depot (Bahnbetriebswerk or Bw) at Nördlingen since 1985. History of the locomotive shed The shed, itself, has a long history. As early as 1849, with the construction of the Ludwig South-North Railway from Lindau to Hof, a workshop appeared for the maintenance of steam locomotives and wagons.

Herkheim (8.86 km)

Herkheim is a part of the municipality of Nördlingen in Germany, about one hundred kilometres east of Stuttgart.

Time pyramid (11.33 km)

The Time pyramid is a work of public art by Manfred Laber under construction in Wemding, Germany. The pyramid, begun in 1993, at the 1200-year anniversary of Wemding, will take almost another 1200 years to complete and is scheduled to be finished in the year 3183. As of 2013, only three of its 120 cuboid blocks have been placed. History The town of Wemding dates back to the year 793 and celebrated its 1200-year anniversary in 1993. The time pyramid was conceived to mark this 1200-year period.

Hühnerberg (Swabia) (13.1 km)

Hühnerberg is a mountain of Bavaria, Germany.

Christgarten Charterhouse (13.56 km)

Christgarten Charterhouse (Kloster Christgarten) is a former Carthusian monastery. or charterhouse, near Ederheim in Bavaria, Germany. History The monastery, dedicated to Saint Peter, was founded in 1383 by counts Ludwig and Friedrich von Oettingen. The counts of Oettingen from 1525 supported the Reformation, and from 1558 Carthusian monks from Christgarten were called to be Protestant ministers. In the course of the Reformation the prior of Hürnheim (near Ederheim) also converted to the new teaching and from then on ministered to Christgarten in a Reformist spirit.

Other mentions of Nördlinger Ries

Steinheim crater

The Steinheim crater is a meteorite crater in Steinheim am Albuch, Heidenheim County, Baden-Württemberg, Germany. The crater is located at the northeastern end of the Swabian Alb near the much larger (24 km diameter) Nördlinger Ries crater and was most probably formed simultaneously with it by the oblique, ENE directed impact of a double asteroid. It is 3.8 km in diameter and the age is estimated to be 15 ± 1 million years (Miocene). The crater is exposed at the surface.
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Text based information has been extracted from various Wikipedia entries. Weather data is provided by OpenWeatherMap. Location distances have been calculated based on Wikipedia information. Thanks to the services of Google, Bing Maps and OSM (Open Street Map) for map related material.

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