Press Esc to close
Thursday 21 August 2014
News updated at 7:20 PM IST
Weather
Max: 30.8°C
Min : 20.7°C
In Bangalore
Generally cloudy

Comet, not asteroid, wiped out dinosaurs?

New York, Mar 24, 2013 (PTI)

A speeding comet, rather than an asteroid, slammed into the Earth 65 million years ago and sparked the extinction of the dinosaurs, scientists claim.

Many scientists believe the 180 km Chicxulub crater in Mexico was made by the impact that caused the extinction of dinosaurs and about 70 per cent of all species on Earth.

The crater was probably blasted out by a faster, smaller object than previously thought, according to the new study presented at the 44th Lunar and Planetary Science Conference in The Woodlands, Texas.

Evidence of the space rock's impact comes from a worldwide layer of sediments containing high levels of the element iridium, dubbed the Cretaceous-Paleogene (K-Pg) boundary, which could not have occurred on Earth naturally.


The new study suggests the often-cited iridium values are incorrect. Scientists compared these values with levels of osmium, another element delivered by the impact.

Their calculations suggest the space rock generated less debris than previously thought, implying the space rock was a smaller object, 'LiveScience' reported.

The researchers concluded in order for the smaller rock to have created the giant Chicxulub crater, it had to have been going exceedingly fast.

Their results indicate the impact is more compatible with a long-period comet, which can take hundreds, thousands or sometimes millions of years to orbit the Sun once.
It is possible that a rapidly moving asteroid could have caused the Chicxulub impact crater, but the fastest-moving objects that have been observed are mostly comets, researchers said.

Go to Top

Photo Gallery
Ashok Leyland's new truck “Boss” gets launched in Ahmedabad ...

Ashok Leyland's new truck “Boss” gets launched in Ahmedabad ...

Sonal Chauhan walks the ramp at the Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2014 ...

Sonal Chauhan walks the ramp at the Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2014 ...

National Ambulance Service vans during their launch in Allahabad ...

National Ambulance Service vans during their launch in Allahabad ...

Veteran actor Dharmendra at an event in New Delhi on Thursday...

Veteran actor Dharmendra at an event in New Delhi on Thursday...

Solar Panel Scam accused, Saritha Nair at the Court in Coimbatore on Thursday...

Solar Panel Scam accused, Saritha Nair at the Court in Coimbatore on Thursday...

A woman with her child at a relief camp after Naga miscreants killed Assamese villagers ...

A woman with her child at a relief camp after Naga miscreants killed Assamese villagers ...

Fire fighters try to control a fire that broke out at a plastic godown at Kaduvetti ...

Fire fighters try to control a fire that broke out at a plastic godown at Kaduvetti ...

Emran Hashmi with Humaima Malik during a promotional event of their new movie in Bengaluru ...

Emran Hashmi with Humaima Malik during a promotional event of their new movie in Bengaluru ...

Bollywood actor Nargis Fakhiri during a promotional event in Bengaluru ...

Bollywood actor Nargis Fakhiri during a promotional event in Bengaluru ...

Shriya Saran walks the ramp at the Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2014 in Mumbai ...

Shriya Saran walks the ramp at the Lakme Fashion Week Winter/Festive 2014 in Mumbai ...

Copyright 2014, The Printers (Mysore) Private Ltd., 75, M.G Road, Post Box 5331, Bangalore - 560001
Tel: +91 (80) 25880000 Fax No. +91 (80) 25880523