Gordon R. Osinski

Gordon R. Osinski
The University of Western Ontario | UWO · Department of Earth Sciences

Ph.D., B.Sc. (Hons)

About

616
Publications
90,818
Reads
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6,282
Citations
Introduction
Dr. Gordon “Oz” Osinski is a Professor in the Department of Earth Sciences at the University of Western Ontario, Canada. His research interests are diverse and interdisciplinary in nature. His main area of research focuses on understanding impact cratering as a planetary geological process, on the Earth, Moon and Mars.
Additional affiliations
July 2018 - present
The University of Western Ontario
Position
  • Professor
July 2013 - June 2018
The University of Western Ontario
Position
  • Professor (Associate)
September 2007 - June 2013
The University of Western Ontario
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
Education
July 1999 - June 2003
University of New Brunswick
Field of study
  • Geology
September 1995 - June 1999
University of St Andrews
Field of study
  • Geology

Publications

Publications (616)
Article
Full-text available
Impact cratering is one of the most fundamental processes responsible for shaping the surfaces of solid planetary bodies. One of the principal characteristics of impact events is the formation and emplacement of ejecta deposits, an understanding of which is critical for planetary exploration. Current models of ejecta emplacement, however, do not ac...
Article
Full-text available
Meteorite impact craters are one of the most common geological features in the solar system. An impact event is a near-instantaneous process that releases a huge amount of energy over a very small region on a planetary surface. This results in characteristic changes in the target rocks, from vaporization and melting to solid-state effects, such as...
Article
Full-text available
The conditions, timing, and setting for the origin of life on Earth and whether life exists elsewhere in our solar system and beyond represent some of the most fundamental scientific questions of our time. Although the bombardment of planets and satellites by asteroids and comets has long been viewed as a destructive process that would have present...
Article
The northernmost exposures of the Laurentian shield in Canada outcrop on Devon and Ellesmere islands, near the tectonic domains of the ≥2.6 Ga Rae Province and ca. 2.0–1.9 Ga Thelon–Inglefield orogenic arc. We report (Th)–U–Pb zircon and monazite ages along with phase equilibrium modelling pressure–temperature estimates for southern Devon Island, t...
Data
Gonzalez-Flores_Jin_Osinski_Tsujita 2022 Astrobiology - Supplemental Data - Acritarch-like microorganisms from the 1.9 Ga Gunflint Chert, Canada
Article
Full-text available
Fossil evidence of eukaryotic life older than 1.8 Ga has long been debated because known fossils of that age usually lack cellular micro- and ultra-structures that bear strong affinities to eukaryotes. These include fossils of the ∼1.9 Ga Gunflint Chert microbiota that, despite being exceptionally well preserved, have suffered from cellular degrada...
Article
The production of superheated melt during hypervelocity impact events has been proposed to be a common occurrence on terrestrial planetary bodies. Recent direct evidence of superheated impact melt temperatures exceeding >2370°C from the Kamestastin (Mistastin Lake) impact structure, Canada, was based on a single impact glass sample. Such high super...
Chapter
Full-text available
Definition Shock metamorphism is the production of irreversible chemical or physical changes in target materials as a result of the passage of shock waves generated from hypervelocity impact events.
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Raman spectroscopy is a useful tool for purposely selecting moderately to strongly shocked samples to study in lab and/or return in future lunar missions.
Article
Impact crater lakes with an inlet valley were common on Mars during past epochs. However, it has not been established exactly how impact craters with initially high-standing rims were breached by an inlet. We investigated four potential mechanisms for inlet valley breach formation: (1) rim erosion, (2) depositional rim burial, (3) drainage head ero...
Conference Paper
Determining the age of meteorite impacts with accuracy and precision requires the use of isotopic chronometers. The suitability of a speciVc chronometer for this task depends on whether or not: 1) the dated phase crystallized during the impact event; 2) the pertinent isotopic systematics of a dated, pre-impact phase were fully reset during the impa...
Article
Impact craters and their ejecta deposits offer insights into the structure and composition of planetary crusts. The 68 km diameter Hargraves Crater, Mars, demonstrates an unusual balance of exposure and preservation in its ejecta deposits. We investigated the morphologic, morphometric, thermophysical, and stratigraphic characteristics of the Hargra...
Article
The peak-ring of the 66 Ma, ~180 km Chicxulub impact structure in the northern Yucatán peninsula and southern Gulf of Mexico was sampled during the International Ocean Discovery Program and International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (IODP–ICDP) Expedition 364 at Site M0077 (21.45° N, 89.95° W). Secondary clay minerals are pervasive throu...
Preprint
Full-text available
During planetary exploration mission operations, one of the key responsibilities of the instrument teams to determine data viability for subsequent analysis. During the 2019 CanMoon Lunar Sample Return Analogue Mission, the Lead Raman Specialist manually examined each spectra to provide quality assurance/validation. This non-trivial process require...
Article
Conspicuous ridges with a circular, sinuous and anastomosing morphology, termed Vermicular Ridge Features (VRFs), have been observed along the coast of Dundas Harbour, Devon Island, Nunavut, Canada. Periglacial and glacial processes can produce morphologically similar ridge landforms, such as stone circles or ice disintegration features. However, V...
Article
Full-text available
Earth’s moon is a primary exploration target for space agencies around the world. The Moon records and preserves key information about fundamental processes that shape planetary crusts such as impact cratering. Understanding shock effects in lunar anorthite (Ca-rich end-member of plagioclase feldspar), the principal component of anorthosite and mos...
Article
Full-text available
We report on the effect of the end-Cretaceous impact event on the present-day deep microbial biosphere at the impact site. IODP-ICDP Expedition 364 drilled into the peak ring of the Chicxulub crater, México, allowing us to investigate the microbial communities within this structure. Increased cell biomass was found in the impact suevite, which was...
Article
In this study, we present quadruple sulfur isotope values (QSI: ³²S,³³S,³⁴S,³⁶S) measured in sediments from two sulfur-rich Mars analogue environments: i) the glacially-fed hydrothermal pools in Iceland (Kerlingarfjöll and Kverkfjöll), and ii) the Lost Hammer hypersaline spring from Axel Heiberg Island, Nunavut, Canada. The localities host differen...
Article
Currently, Mars appears to be in a frozen state, with the clear majority of the planet’s surface maintaining year-round sub-zero temperatures. The discovery of features consistent with landforms found in periglacial environments on Earth, suggests a recent climate history for Mars dominated by the presence of permafrost and/or freeze-thaw cycling....
Article
Large impact structures with peak rings are common landforms across the solar system, and their formation has implications for both the interior structure and thermal evolution of planetary bodies. Numerical modeling and structural studies have been used to simulate and ground truth peak-ring formative mechanisms, but the shock metamorphic record o...
Article
High‐resolution images and elevation data sets from the Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter along with spectral data from the Clementine mission are used to identify and map in detail the well‐preserved Late Imbrian Tsiolkovskiy crater situated on the far side of the Moon. This study identifies five distinct morphologic units associated with Tsiolkovskiy...
Article
Core from Hole M0077 from IODP/ICDP Expedition 364 provides unprecedented evidence for the physical processes in effect during the interaction of impact melt with rock-debris-laden seawater, following a large meteorite impact into waters of the Yucatán shelf. Evidence for this interaction is based on petrographic, microstructural and chemical exami...
Article
Full-text available
This paper emphasizes the importance of using terrestrial analogues to improve our understanding of the role of ice on Mars, both in the past and present, through its associated landforms. We present a series of sites of interest for their climate conditions, topography, glaciation history, ice dynamics and mass balance, and presence of specific la...
Article
Full-text available
Mars Polar Science is an integrated, compelling system that serves as a nearby analogue to numerous other planets, supports human exploration, and habitability. Mars possesses the closest and most easily accessible layered ice deposits outside of Earth, and accessing those layers to read the climate record would be a triumph for planetary science.
Article
Negril crater is a 52 km complex crater located north of Syrtis Major, Mars. The central uplift of Negril crater is remarkably well-exposed and contains one of the best examples of dykes associated with a Martian crater. This study aims to characterize the dykes within the central uplift and determine if they are impactite dykes that formed as a pa...
Article
The impact melt‐bearing breccias at the Ries impact structure, Germany, host degassing pipes: vertical structures that are inferred to represent conduits along which gases and fluids escaped to the surface, consistent with hydrothermal activity that occurs soon after an impact event. Although the presence of degassing pipes has been recognized with...
Article
Viscous flow features, including lobate debris aprons and lineated valley fill, are common ice-related features found across the mid-latitudes of Mars. These features are commonly found along the dichotomy boundary and around massifs where snow and ice can accumulate and flow to topographic lows during periods of higher obliquity. We have identifie...
Preprint
Full-text available
In geology, a key activity is the characterisation of geological structures (surface formation topology and rock units) using Planar Orientation measurements such as Strike, Dip and Dip Direction. In general these measurements are collected manually using basic equipment; usually a compass/clinometer and a backboard, recorded on a map by hand. Vari...
Article
Full-text available
The southern highlands of Mars are dissected by hundreds of valley networks, which are evidence that water once sculpted the surface. Characterizing the mechanisms of valley incision may constrain early Mars climate and the search for ancient life. Previous interpretations of the geological record require precipitation and surface water runoff to f...
Article
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Connecting the surface expression of impact crater‐related lithologies to planetary or regional subsurface compositions requires an understanding of material transport during crater formation. Here, we use imaging spectroscopy of 6 clast‐rich impact melt rock outcrops within the well‐preserved 23.5‐Ma, 23‐km diameter Haughton impact structure, Cana...
Article
The origin of the Stac Fada Member has been debated for decades with several early hypotheses being proposed, but all invoking some connection to volcanic activity. In 2008, the discovery of shocked quartz led to the hypothesis that the Stac Fada Member represents part the continuous ejecta blanket of a meteorite impact crater, the location of whic...
Article
Full-text available
In this paper we introduce the first dual-wavelength, kinematic backpack laser scanning system and its application on high resolution 3D terrain modelling of permafrost landforms. We discuss the data processing pipeline from acquisition to preparation, system calibration and terrain model process. Topographic information is vital for planning and m...
Article
The 66 Ma, ∼180 km Chicxulub impact structure in the northern Yucatán peninsula and southern Gulf of Mexico is the best-preserved large impact crater on Earth with a well-developed peak ring. The most recent drilling campaign took place offshore during the joint International Ocean Discovery Program – International Continental Scientific Drilling P...
Article
Full-text available
Observational and logical arguments are presented for the lithology formerly named the Garson Member of the Onaping Formation being the clast‐bearing, fine‐grained, chilled Upper Contact Unit (UCU) of the Sudbury Igneous Complex (SIC) in the Garson region of the Sudbury impact structure. It differs considerably, however, from the UCU in the North R...
Article
The world's meteorite collections contain a very rich picture of what the early Solar System would have been made of, however the lack of spatial context with respect to their parent population for these samples is an issue. The asteroid population is equally as rich in surface mineralogies, and mapping these two populations (meteorites and asteroi...
Article
Full-text available
Plagioclase feldspar is one of the most abundant minerals on the surface of the Earth, the Moon, and Mars, and is also commonly found in meteorites. Studying shock effects in feldspar thus provides us with fundamental information about impact cratering processes on planetary bodies. In this study, plagioclase from monomict and polymict breccias, im...
Article
The ~180-km-diameter Chicxulub peak-ring crater and ~240-km multiring basin, produced by the impact that terminated the Cretaceous, is the largest remaining intact impact basin on Earth. International Ocean Discovery Program (IODP) and International Continental Scientific Drilling Program (ICDP) Expedition 364 drilled to a depth of 1335 m below the...
Article
The surface morphology and roughness of a lava flow provides insight on its lava properties and emplacement processes. This is essential information for understanding the eruption history of lava fields, and magmatic processes beneath the surface of Earth and other planetary bodies such as the Moon. The surface morphology is influenced by lava prop...
Article
Full-text available
Shocked quartz and feldspar grains commonly exhibit planar microstructures, such as planar fractures, planar deformation features, and possibly microtwins, which are considered to have formed by shock metamorphism. Their orientation and frequency are typically reported to be randomly distributed across a sample. The goal of this study is to investi...
Preprint
The meteorite collections contain a very rich picture of what the early Solar System would have been made of, however the lack of spatial context with respect to their parent population for these samples is an issue. The asteroid population is equally as rich in surface mineralogies, and mapping these two populations (meteorites and asteroids) toge...
Article
Full-text available
The age of the Gow Lake impact structure (Saskatchewan, Canada) is poorly constrained, with previous estimates ranging from 100 to 250 Ma. Using a combination of step-heating and UV laser in situ ⁴⁰Ar/³⁹Ar analyses we have sought to understand the ⁴⁰Ar/³⁹Ar systematics of this small impact crater and obtain a more precise and accurate age. This str...
Article
By analyzing impact glass, the evolution of the impact melt at the Mistastin Lake impact structure was investigated. Impact glass clasts are present in a range of impactites, including polymict breccias and clast‐rich impact melt rock, and from a variety of settings within the crater. From the glass clasts analyzed, three petrographic subtypes of i...
Article
The 1.85 Ga Sudbury impact structure is considered a remnant of a peak-ring or multi-ring basin with an estimated original diameter of 150 to 200 km. The Offset Dikes are radial and concentric dikes around the Sudbury Igneous Complex (SIC) and are composed of the so-called inclusion-rich Quartz Diorite (IQD) and inclusion-poor Quartz Diorite (QD),...
Article
In 2011, the discovery of shatter cones confirmed the 28 km diameter Tunnunik complex impact structure, Northwest Territories, Canada. This study presents the first results of ground‐based electromagnetic, gravimetric, and magnetic surveys over this impact structure. Its central area is characterized by a ~10 km wide negative gravity anomaly of abo...
Conference Paper
Full-text available
Discusses some preliminary results of petrographic analysis on impactite and pyroclastic rocks to compare and contrast potential similarities in mineralogy, morphology, and texture between the different rock types.
Article
This study presents a modified semi-empirical radar scattering model for weathered rough rock surfaces. Weathered rocks generally have dry surfaces except for a few hours after heavy rain due to their rapid drainage compared to bare soils. We find that the dielectric properties of the rocks themselves and the moisture content of a marginal amount o...
Article
Asteroid and comet impacts are known to have caused profound disruption to multicellular life, yet their influence on habitats for microorganisms, which comprise the majority of Earth's biomass, is less well understood. Of particular interest are geological changes in the target lithology at and near the point of impact that can persist for billion...
Conference Paper
We used radar and LiDAR remote sensing data to understand the roughness, morphology and emplacement processes of the 2014‒2015 Holuhraun lava flow field in Iceland, as an analogue for lunar and Martian lava flows. Remote sensing observations alone can provide general distinctions between smooth and rough lava flows. However, more information is req...
Article
Full-text available
The impact of asteroids and comets with planetary surfaces is one of the most catastrophic, yet ubiquitous, geological processes in the solar system. The Chicxulub impact event, which has been linked to the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) mass extinction marking the beginning of the Cenozoic Era, is arguably the most significant singular geological eve...