Recently in the Impact events Category


Tremendous amounts of soot, lofted into the air from global wildfires following a massive asteroid strike 66 million years ago, would have plunged Earth into darkness for nearly two years, new research finds.

Earth is Bombarded at Random

Do mass extinctions, like the fall of the dinosaurs, and the formation of large impact craters on Earth occur together at regular intervals?

Rampino & Caldeira (2015) carry out a circular spectral analysis (CSA) of the terrestrial impact cratering record over the past 260 million years (Ma), and suggest a ~26 Ma periodicity of impact events. For some of the impacts in that analysis, new accurate and high-precision ("robust"; 2SE<2%) 40Ar-39Ar ages have recently been published, resulting in significant age shifts.

66 million years ago, the sudden extinction of the dinosaurs started the ascent of the mammals, ultimately resulting in humankind's reign on Earth.

Scientists studying the Chicxulub crater have shown how large asteroid impacts deform rocks in a way that may produce habitats for early life.

A comet strike may have triggered the Paleocene-Eocene Thermal Maximum (PETM), a rapid warming of the Earth caused by an accumulation of atmospheric carbon dioxide 56 million years ago, which offers analogs to global warming today.

A new reconstruction of Antarctic ocean temperatures around the time the dinosaurs disappeared 66 million years ago supports the idea that one of the planet's biggest mass extinctions was due to the combined effects of volcanic eruptions and an asteroid impact.

The geologic shape of what were once shorelines through Mars' northern plains convinces scientists that two large meteorites - hitting the planet millions of years apart - triggered a pair of mega-tsunamis.

Melting Pots for Life on Earth

Geochemists from Trinity College Dublin's School of Natural Sciences may have found a solution to a long-debated problem as to where - and how - life first formed on Earth.

The bombardment of Mars some 4 billion years ago by comets and asteroids as large as West Virginia likely enhanced climate conditions enough to make the planet more conducive to life, at least for a time, says a new University of Colorado Boulder study.