(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists managed to find the main evidence that the mass extinction 66 million years ago was the result of the impact of a huge asteroid. He caused the death of 75% of all life on our planet.
Experts found asteroid dust inside the impact crater. Walter Alvarez in 1960 discovered a strange site in the small province of Perugia, which is located in Italy. He analyzed the deposits at the site and determined that they contained an iridium anomaly.
At the very beginning, no one could even guess what kind of origin this anomaly has. After some time, Alvarez suggested that the cause of its appearance could be the impact of a huge asteroid, which happened at the end of the Cretaceous. As a result of the impact, a crater was formed, the width of which is 180 kilometers.
Stephen Goderis conducted a new study of the crater samples and was able to date the deposits that contain dust with iridium. It is worth noting that the only thing left after the impact of the asteroid is dust. In addition to iridium, many other elements were present in the samples, indicating that this was where the asteroid fell.
The Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction was not provoked by the impact of an asteroid, but by its consequences. In addition to a strong shock wave and fire storms, after a while a lot of dangerous gas evaporated into the air. He, in turn, began to interact with water vapor and caused acid rain.
There was so much dust in the atmosphere that it covered the sun. Plants did not stop producing oxygen and began to die. This became the cause of death, first of herbivores, and then of carnivores.
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