Airbursts and Cratering Impacts

A peer-reviewed open-access journal collection covering all aspects of airbursts and impacts on Earth by comets and asteroids


Airbursts and Cratering Impacts


Our journal collection, "Airbursts and Cratering Impacts," covers all aspects of impact events on the Earth by comets and asteroids. It is open-access, peer-reviewed, and multidisciplinary, and it encourages submissions on significant, cutting-edge, impact-related investigations that: 

  •     Are broadly multidisciplinary, making them difficult to review; 
  •     Run counter to a prevailing view; 
  •     Are too novel to receive a fair review; or 
  •     Have been rejected by other journals. 

We support the philosophy that publishing scientific articles should be simple and easy for authors. More importantly, the significance and usefulness of new knowledge should be decided by many scientific experts rather than filtered through one editor and a few reviewers.

The publication of articles is frequently hindered by a peer-review process that sometimes works well but far too often is seriously flawed. Journal editors are frequently not knowledgeable about a manuscript’s field of study yet have the power to reject a manuscript unilaterally.

Even more problematic, biased reviewers often act as "gatekeepers" to prevent novel discoveries from being published, to the detriment of scientific progress. 

The flaws in the current journal publication system are having a highly detrimental effect on scientific research. A recent Nature news article (01/04/2023) reported that paradigm-shifting, "disruptive science" has experienced a massive decline of more than 90%. The article added that "the number of science and technology research papers published has skyrocketed over the past few decades, but the proportion of publications that send a field in a new direction has plummeted." A flawed review process is one reason for this.

We are helping to counter this trend by utilizing a multi-tiered peer-review process with both single-blind and open-review components, as follows: 

  • First, the article is internally reviewed by our expert Editorial Board members and Guest Editors. 
  • Second, the Board will invite single-blind reviewers to comment on the article. Previous reviews from submissions rejected by other journals are also considered and given the same weight as current reviews. Our commitment is to rarely reject submissions outright but rather to work with authors through multiple revisions until a manuscript is acceptable for publication. This assures that ground-breaking discoveries will be published rather than suppressed and are widely available to readers at no cost.
  • Third, the article will undergo a non-anonymous, post-publication review, in which an article's quality and impact are judged by comments from the scientific community at large, by its number of downloads, by its Altmetric score, and by its number of citations.



Airbursts and Cratering Impacts                    ISSN  2941-9085

Publisher: ScienceOpen, Germany

Browse key publications on Airburst and Crater Research.

Click the Collection title above to access more than 100 articles, conference presentations, posters, and preprints.



Prof. Dr. Kord Ernstson

  • Affiliation: Faculty of Philosophy, Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg, Germany
  • Interests: Meteorite impact cratering; meteorite mineralogy; shock metamorphism; impact rocks/impactites; geology and geophysics of impact structures; meteorite impact archeology
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0000-0001-9692-6868

Dr. James Powell

  • Affiliations: past President/Director of the Los Angeles County Museum of Natural History, of Oberlin College, of Franklin and Marshall College, and of Reed College. 
  • Interests: extinction events, climate change, geology, geochemistry, comet impacts 
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0000-0002-8362-6863

Dr. Kenneth Tankersley

  • Affiliation: Department of Anthropology, Department of Geology, University of Cincinnati, Ohio USA
  • Interests: Native American sociopolitical issues; human adaptation to catastrophic events; archeology; meteorite/comet impacts
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0000-0002-2474-6283

Dr. Martin Sweatman

  • Affiliation: Faculty, University of Edinburgh,  School of Engineering
  • Interests: archaeoastronomy; prehistoric meteorite/comet impacts; molecular thermodynamics of fluid
  • Publications: Academia
  • ORCID ID: 0000-0002-6680-1367

Dr. Malcolm LeCompte

  • Affiliation: Center of Excellence in Remote Sensing Education and Research (CERSER), Elizabeth City State University, NC USA.
  • Interests: Impacts, airbursts, microspherules, meltglass, craters, platinum-group elements, carbon spherules, Paleoamericans, and megafaunal extinctions
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0009-0008-7278-9481

Dr. Christopher Moore

  • Affiliation: Research Professor, South Carolina Institute of Archaeology and Anthropology, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC USA 
  • Interests: Paleoamericans, geoarchaeology, blood residue analysis, megafaunal extinctions, Younger Dryas climate, microspherules, platinum-group elements, impacts, and airbursts
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0009-0009-3961-7626

Dr. Allen West, Journal Coordinator.

  • Affiliation: Director of the Comet Research Group, Prescott, AZ USA
  • Interests: Airbursts; impacts; shock metamorphism; nanodiamonds; platinum-group elements; paleoarcheology; Younger Dryas climate; radiocarbon dating; megafaunal extinctions
  • Publications: ResearchGate
  • ORCID ID: 0000-0003-3576-4847

Expert Guest Editors will be invited as needed.

Our 7-step review strategy is as follows: 

  • After an article is submitted, the Editorial Board members will conduct an internal review for relevance to the theme of this journal. The Board may request revisions or accept and recommend publication. The Board may also decline a submission for any reason.
  • The article may be sent for review by Board-invited, qualified reviewers to assess its importance, validity, completeness, and comprehensibility. 
  • The authors will then have the full opportunity to address the issues raised by all reviewers, whether positive or negative. 
  • Suppose an article has been previously reviewed and declined by another journal. In that case, those reviews also will be considered by the Board and given the same weight as current reviews as long as the authors have adequately addressed all criticisms. 
  • Upon receiving the authors' revisions, the Board will accept, ask for revisions, or reject the article. If accepted, the article will be published online, complete with a citable Digital Object Identifier (DOI). 
  • Non-anonymous post-publication comments and peer reviews then follow the publication. 
  • Any substantive post-publication input must be addressed by the authors, resulting in the publication of updated, improved versions of the article. This post-publication review process potentially continues indefinitely.

Alternatively, the authors can pursue a shorter review track. Rather than submit an article directly to our journal, the authors can upload it through our host, ScienceOpen, as a publicly available preprint. Afterward, they can arrange for non-anonymous reviewers. ScienceOpen stipulates that the article can be formally published if at least two reviewers submit positive reviews. In some cases, the Board will recommend this review track as an alternative to the longer review process.



    • GENERAL. A submission must be based on sound scientific evidence and methodology and not be purely speculative. It must be original and may not be written using AI software.
    • SUBMISSION. List the Corresponding Author's name, affiliation, and contact information, who must have an ORCID ID ( and be registered on the ScienceOpen platform. The lead author must also be registered with both.
    • POTENTIAL REVIEWERS. Authors should submit the names and contact emails of three or more potential reviewers familiar with the paper's topic. All reviewers must have an ORCID ID ( and be registered on the ScienceOpen platform. Potential reviewers must be contacted by authors in advance and agree to review their article. Also, include the names of any referees you would like excluded from reviewing.
    • MAIN MANUSCRIPT. There are no strict formatting requirements or limits on the submission's page count. Submissions should include a Title (up to 30 words), Authors, Affiliations, Abstract (up to 300 words), Keywords (up to 10), Abbreviations (optional), and Introduction in that order. These should be followed by Results, Discussion, and Conclusions, which may be combined as the authors choose. 
    • LANGUAGE. Our journal only accepts manuscripts in English (US or UK). The authors are responsible for ensuring that the manuscript has no language or grammatical errors. We recommend using Grammarly, a free proofreading software ( Manuscripts with excessive language errors will be asked to arrange professional proofreading or pay for the journal's copy-editing and proofreading, usually costing about $7 US per page. The journal must approve the final result.    
    • STYLE. Manuscripts may be written in any standard word-processing program, preferably Word or LaTeX. In the initial submission, the manuscript should have a spacing of 2x or 1.5x lines with line numbers and page numbers. 
    • FIGURES. Initially, figures should be embedded in the submitted PDF just below where they are first cited in the text. The resolution should be a minimum of 300 dpi.
    • TABLES. These are limited to one PDF page.
    • METHODS. Any submitted article must include a complete description of the methods used so that others have sufficient information to replicate the results.
    • ACKNOWLEDGMENTS (optional).
    • FUNDING. All sources of funding for the research reported should be declared.
    • COMPETING INTERESTS. Any potential conflicts of interest for each co-author should be disclosed. Err on the side of revealing any potential issues. Where there are no competing interests, authors must declare this by stating, "The authors declare no financial or other conflicts of interest regarding this work."
    • REFERENCES. References may be in any style, provided that formatting is consistent throughout. Including full author names, journal or book title, article or chapter title, year of publication, volume, and issue is required. Each reference's DOI (Digital Object Identifiers) should be added wherever possible, but it is not mandatory. Bibliography management tools such as EndNote, Zotero, Mendeley, and Reference Manager are recommended.
    • PREVIOUS REVIEWS. Suppose the article has been previously submitted to and reviewed by other journals. In that case, the authors may attach the journal's name to the end of their submission, along with copies of the reviews, whether positive or negative. The authors should include a point-by-point response describing how they addressed any issues mentioned in those reviews.
    • DATA. All submitted articles must include a statement of data accessibility. The text should state one or more of the following: 1) All data reasonably necessary to justify the conclusions are included in the article. These data can be included as an appendix at the end of the manuscript. The journal does not support uploading Supporting Information. Or 2) data will be made available upon request by any interested party. Or 3) data will be uploaded to an online data repository. 
    • SUPPORTING INFORMATION. During the initial submission, supplementary datasets, tables, and other helpful information that helps the reader understand the manuscript may be appended to the end of the submitted PDF or uploaded to a dated repository. Once the manuscript has been accepted, the authors must upload this supporting information to a public data repository and provide the URL link in their paper. 
      • At the time of submission, the lead author and corresponding author must have an ORCID ID ( and be registered on the ScienceOpen platform.
      • Upload your manuscript as a single PDF file via the "Submit manuscript" button and complete the online form.
      • The manuscript will be sent to the Editorial Board, which will assess the paper's suitability before sending it out to potential reviewers. The single-blind peer-review process may take up to approximately four weeks. After that, the Editors will either accept the paper, request a major or minor revision, or decline the article.
      • When asked to revise a manuscript, please briefly summarize changes made in the cover letter.
      • Make your changes to the manuscript and save it as Tracked Changes.
      • Submit a separate PDF file where you write the reviewers’ comments and include your response to each one. Be specific in your answers, and address all points raised by the editors and reviewers. Outline what revisions have been made, including, if applicable, whether you conducted any further analyses or experiments. If necessary, provide a polite, objective rebuttal to any comments you disagree with.
    • SUBMITTING A REVISED MANUSCRIPT. Once you are ready to submit, please follow these steps:
      • Log in to My ScienceOpen.
      • Navigate to your paper online to see a ‘New Revision’ button under the ‘Read’ button. 
      • Fill out the re-submission form and check that all details are correct.
      • Upload the new revised PDF file.
    • FINAL SUBMISSION. If an article is accepted for publication, it can be sent to typesetting. The cost is $30 US per final PDF page. An invoice must be paid before publication. Typesetting typically takes two to three weeks.

      • Make a PDF of the final version of your article, so that the typesetter can see the layout.

      • Remove all figures and tables from your DOC file, leaving the captions in their correct places.

      • Size all figures as JPGs at 300 dpi and the desired width, e.g., 14 cm (<18 cm).

      • If you have Supporting Information, upload it to a site like Zenodo and link your article to it.

      • Create a ZIP file containing the following:

        • The article text as a DOC file;

        • All figures as JPGs;

        • Tables as XLS or DOC files;

        • A PDF of your complete article.

      • Log in to our sub-journal at ScienceOpen.

      • Find your article.

      • Upload the ZIP file.

      • When uploaded, email us at


    • There is a one-time, per-article publication charge of $25 USD.
    • The journal requires typesetting, which produces an XML version that is easier for readers to view online. In addition, a PDF version will be provided for readers to download. Typesetting costs are about $25 USD per PDF page, so, for example, a 10-page PDF would cost the authors about $250 USD. 
    • In addition, proofreading charges of about $7 USD per PDF page may be required if the English syntax and grammar need improvement.
    • These publication charges are due and payable before publication.


    By submitting my manuscript to the journal Airbursts and Cratering Impacts published by ScienceOpen (hereafter the ‘Publisher’), I herewith grant permission to the Publisher to publish my article upon editorial acceptance under the following publishing agreement.

    I hereby confirm that this is my original work and that

    • I own the sole copyright in this work
    • And/or I have obtained permission from all other Authors to execute this Agreement on their behalf if necessary

    And that the work

    • Has never been published before.

    I understand that in granting this consent I am granting to the Publisher the Rights to publish under a Creative Commons CC-BY 4.0 license the Contribution in the English language in digital form; moral rights will be retained by the original Author/s and copyright will be held by the Author.

    I agree to this Publishing Agreement, consent to execution and delivery of the Publishing Agreement electronically, and agree that confirming my consent electronically during the manuscript submission process with an electronic signature shall be given the same legal force as a handwritten signature.

    Terms of Use

    1. The Contribution will be made Open Access under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC-BY License) which permits use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided that the Contribution is properly cited.
    2. The Journal (and Publisher) reserves the right to require changes to the Contribution, including changes to the length of the Contribution, as a condition of its acceptance. The Journal (and Publisher) reserves the right, notwithstanding acceptance, not to publish the Contribution if for any reason such publication would in the reasonable judgment of the Journal (and Publisher), result in legal liability or violation of journal ethical practices. If the Journal (or Publisher) decides not to publish the Contribution, the Author is free to submit the Contribution to any other journal from any other publisher.
    3. As above, the final Contribution will be made Open Access under the terms of the CC-BY license. Reproduction, posting, transmission, or other distribution or use of the final Contribution in whole or in part in any medium by the Author as permitted by this Agreement requires a citation to the Journal suitable in form and content as follows: (Title of Contribution, Author, Journal Title and Volume/issue, Digital Object Identifier (DOI), Date). Links to the final published Contribution should be provided following the guidance below on best practices.

    Retained Rights

    The Author retains all proprietary rights in addition to copyright, such as patent rights in any process, procedure, or article of manufacture described in the Contribution.

    Author's Representations

    The Author(s) certify that they have participated sufficiently in the intellectual content, conception, and design of this work or the analysis and interpretation of the data (when applicable), as well as the writing of the manuscript, to take public responsibility for it and have agreed to have their name listed as a contributor. The Author(s) believe the manuscript represents valid work. Neither this manuscript nor one with substantially similar content under their authorship has been published or is being considered for publication elsewhere, except as described in the cover letter. The Author(s) certify that all the data collected during the study is presented in this manuscript and no data from the study has been or will be published separately. If requested by the editors, the Author(s) will provide the data/information or will cooperate fully in obtaining and providing the data/information on which the manuscript is based, for examination by the editors or their assignees. Financial interests, direct or indirect, that exist or may be perceived to exist for individual contributors in connection with the content of this paper have been disclosed in the cover letter. Sources of outside support for the project are named in the cover letter.

    Use of Information

    The Author(s) acknowledges that, during the term of this Agreement and thereafter (for as long as necessary), the Publisher and the Journal may process the Author’s data, including storing or transferring data outside of the country of the Contributor’s residence, to communicate with the Author(s) and that the Publisher has a legitimate interest in processing the Author(s)’ personal data. By entering into this Agreement, the Author(s) agree to the processing of personal data (and, where applicable, confirms that the Author has obtained permission from all other authors to process their data). The Publisher and the Journal shall comply with all applicable laws, statutes, and regulations relating to data protection and privacy and shall process such personal data.


    By publishing in the journal authors are required to make research data available to editors and reviewers, and to readers upon request. For some research data, deposition in repositories is required and this is encouraged for all research data. For some papers, the decision to publish will be affected by whether or not authors share their research data.


    • Data sharing via repositories for some research data
    • Data availability statements
    • Data sharing on request

    Optional / Encouraged

    • Data citation
    • Data sharing via repositories for all research data
    • Prepare and share Data Management Plans



    Definition of research data

    This policy applies to the research data that would be required to verify the results of research reported in articles published in the journal. Research data include data produced by the authors (“primary data”) and data from other sources that are analysed by authors in their study (“secondary data”). Research data includes any recorded factual material that are used to produce the results in digital and non-digital form. This includes tabular data, code, images, audio, documents, video, maps, raw and/or processed data.

    Definition of exceptions

    Research data that are not required to verify the results reported in articles are not covered by this policy.

    This policy does not require public sharing of quantitative or qualitative data that could identify a research participant unless participants have consented to data release. The policy also does not require public sharing of other sensitive data, such as the locations of endangered species. Alternatives to public sharing of sensitive or personal  data include:

    • Deposition of research data in controlled access repositories
    • Anonymisation or deidentification of data before public sharing
    • Only sharing metadata about the research data

    Stating the procedures for accessing your research data in your article and managing data access requests from other researchers.


    Embargoes on data sharing are only permitted with the agreement of the Editors.

    Supplementary materials

    Sharing research data as supplementary information files is discouraged. Research data of the types listed in “Mandatory data sharing (specific papers)” must not be uploaded as supplementary information files. The journal will require authors to deposit these in an approved repository as a condition of publication.

    Data repositories

    The preferred mechanism for sharing research data is via data repositories. Please see <recommended repository list> or for help finding research data repositories. Research data of the types listed in “Mandatory data sharing (specific papers)” must be uploaded to an appropriate repository. The journal will require authors to deposit these in an approved repository as a condition of publication.

    Data citation

    The journal encourages authors to cite any publicly available research data in their reference list. References to datasets (data citations) must include a persistent identifier (such as a DOI). Citations of datasets, when they appear in the reference list, should include the minimum information recommended by DataCite and follow journal style.

    Data licensing

    The journal encourages research data to be made available under open licences that permit reuse freely. The journal does not enforce particular licenses for research data, where research data are deposited in third party repositories. The publisher of the journal does not claim copyright in research data.

    Researcher/ author support

    Questions about complying with this policy should be sent to

    Data availability statements

    The journal requires authors to include in any articles that report results derived from research data to include a Data Availability Statement as part of the submission process. The provision of a Data availability statement that is compatible with the journal’s research data policy will be verified as a condition of publication. Data availability statements should include information on where data supporting the results reported in the article can be found including, where applicable, hyperlinks to publicly archived datasets analysed or generated during the study. Where research data are not publicly available, this must be stated in the manuscript along with any conditions for accessing the data. Data Availability statements must take one of the following forms (or a combination of more than one if required for multiple types of research data):

    • The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current study are available in the [NAME] repository, [PERSISTENT WEB LINK TO DATASETS]
    • The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current​ study are not publicly available due [REASON WHY DATA ARE NOT PUBLIC] but are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.
    • The datasets generated during and/or analysed during the current​ study are available from the corresponding author on reasonable request.
    • Data sharing not applicable to this article as no datasets were​             generated or analysed during the current study.
    • All data generated or analysed during this study are included in this​             published article [and its supplementary information files].

    The data that support the findings of this study are available from [third party name] but restrictions apply to the availability of these data, which were used under license for the current study, and so are not publicly available. Data are however available from the authors upon reasonable request and with permission of [third party name].

    Data formats and standards

    The journal encourages authors to share research data using data formats and standards recognised by their research community. Please see for more information on established data sharing formats and standards.

    The journal prefers research data to be shared in open file formats – those that do not require proprietary software to access - where possible. For example, tabular data should be shared as CSV files rather than XLS files.

    Mandatory data sharing (specific papers)

    For certain types of research data, submission to a community-endorsed, public repository is mandatory. The journal will require authors to deposit data of these types in an approved repository as a condition of publication.

    Research data and peer review

    Peer reviewers are encouraged to check the manuscript’s Data Availability statement. Where applicable, they should consider if the authors have complied with the journal’s policy on the availability of research data, and whether reasonable effort has been made to make the data that support the findings of the study available for replication or reuse by other researchers. Peer reviewers are entitled to request access to underlying data (and code) when needed for them to perform their evaluation of a manuscript.




    The journal encourages authors to prepare Data Management Plans before conducting their research and encourages authors to make those plans available to editors, reviewers and readers who wish to assess them.

    This ScienceOpen sub-journal is operated by the Comet Research Group (CRG). Home page:

    • CRG is a non-profit 501c(3) charitable scientific organization. Our IRS tax ID # is 81-3203860.
    • CRG uses donations to pay SciencOpen to host this sub-journal, but CRG does not make any profit. 
    • Please donate if you would like to join us in making ground-breaking scientific discoveries available to thousands.
    • To make a tax-deductible donation, please click this link: Donate to CRG.

    Collection Information

    Latest Issue