(ORDO NEWS) — Scientists from Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore found that the largest asteroid that hit the Earth was twice the size of the Chicxulub asteroid that killed the dinosaurs.
The Vredefort crater with a diameter of 159 km, located on the territory of South Africa, was formed 2 billion years ago when the Earth collided with the largest asteroid.
The crater he left behind is smaller than the 180 km diameter Chicxulub crater formed by the dinosaur killer.
But impact craters are slowly destroyed over time due to erosion, so scientists suggest that the Vredefort crater originally had a diameter of 250 to 280 km.
It was previously thought that its original width was about 172 km. Given the new estimates, the diameter of the asteroid itself was about 20-25 km – larger than the diameter of Chicxulub (12 km)
At the time of the collision with a giant asteroid, only single-celled life forms existed on Earth, of which there were practically no traces left.
Scientists, however, are confident that the asteroid Vredefort had an even more noticeable impact on the global climate than Chicxulub.
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