Crater in Qatar found with Google Earth? (Yawn)

An article in Qatar’s otherwise respectable daily, Gulf Times, dated 24 March, proclaims:

‘Meteor crater’ found in Dukhan:

A crater, believed to have been created by the impact of a falling meteor, found near Dukhan.

Sheikh Salman bin Jabor al-Thani, head of the astronomical department at Qatar Scientific Club, said yesterday the club believed that the meteor had hit Qatar in the 1940s. The club started a search for evidence three years ago because of stories of a “falling star” told by people of that era. The club took the help of Google Earth in the search. They succeeded in locating five craters, which were just visible on the surface.

There is an accompanying screenshot of a round feature in the desert in Qatar. You can see it for yourself here in Google Maps:

View Larger Map

A crater? From the 40s? I highly doubt it. Looks more like an old lake bed, like the ones further north. Were tests conducted on location before going public with this? Or can anyone join in this game in Qatar and get a pre-emptive mention in the Gulf Times? Is this what counts as science over there? The place is crawling with round features. Are they all craters?

PS: Googling “Sheikh Salman bin Jabor al-Thani” tells me he is in charge of determining when religious holidays start in Qatar and also executive manager of the Al Jabor Cement Company. What a polymath!

2 thoughts on “Crater in Qatar found with Google Earth? (Yawn)”

  1. I would like to clear that in the press conference I made I stated to the media that, first indication point to where the falling meteor was first seen in the 40’s and we will require two more years to confirm if or not it’s a meteor crater. Now it’s not my problem if the media did not mention that. plus there are so many indications in the area that confirm it’s a meteor crater, but I don’t think you are interested in knowing the truth rather than just spreading the wrong msg..

  2. Fair enough, the media didn’t report your disclaimer, but don’t you think it would have been more responsible to confirm first and announce later? Especially as the place you found lacks all the features of a young crater – no ejecta, lots of erosion…

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