An asteroid wiped out the dinosaurs

Discussion in 'Locker Room' started by Danielson, Feb 8, 2013.

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    A team of American and European researchers have confirmed that the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction — the event that wiped out roughly 75% of the planet’s species, including almost every dinosaur — was caused by an asteroid impact in Mexico 66 million years ago. The Cretaceous–Paleogene extinction was the last great extinction event to occur on Earth, and is most notable for causing the diversification of mammals that eventually resulted in Homo sapiens.

    66 million years ago an asteroid roughly 15 kilometers (9 miles) wide hurtled into Chicxulub, Mexico. The collision, which left behind a 180-kilometer (110-mile) crater, released 420 zettajoules of energy — 100 teratonnes of TNT, or roughly two million times stronger than the largest thermonuclear device ever used (the Russian Tsar Bomba). The impact created a huge dust cloud that blocked out the Sun, starting the extinction ball rolling by killing off much of the world’s plants, and thus the herbivores soon after. Due to high levels of oxygen in the Cretaceous atmosphere, the impact may also have caused intense, global firestorms that killed off many other species. Because the asteroid landed in the ocean, megatsunamis would’ve swept the world’s coasts, too.

    Chicxulub topography. You can just about see a portion of the impact crater in the top left corner.

    Until now, though, there hasn’t been enough evidence that the Chicxulub impact actually caused the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction. There was certainly a massive asteroid impact, but previous evidence showed that the asteroid impact occurred up to 300,000 years before the extinction of the dinosaurs. Biologists and geologists have argued that there may have been another cause — an impact at the Shiva crater off the coast of India, global volcanic eruptions, or perhaps something more gradual.

    Now, however, European and American scientists have re-tested debris from Chicxulub using state-of-the-art equipment and narrowed the asteroid impact down to a period of 11,000 years, between 66.03 and 66.04 million years ago — almost simultaneous with the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction. When dealing with geological timescales, a range of 11,000 years is about as accurate as you can get. As the research paper puts it, though, “the Chicxulub impact likely triggered a state shift of ecosystems already under near-critical stress.” In other words, prior to the extinction event, Earth was already teetering on the edge of self-annihilation. The asteroid was simply the zettajoule stick that broke T-Rex’s back.

    You'd need a time machine to confirm it but
    "Theory significantly strengthened though!"
  2. Hasn't this been the generally accepted reason for a long time?
    This is what I was taught in school.
  3. Sure, and now it's scientifically proven :-)
  4. Kind of makes you put things into perspective though. A 9 mile asteroid randomly hit earth and created a dust cloud big enough to block the sun. Who's to say something like that won't happen any time soon?
  5. Astronomers, Scientists. All those NASA employees who watch space and know what is going on.
  6. I wish more dinosaurs were still around (like crocodiles and such) :downer:
  7. If it did, we have Bruce Willis :jeritroll:

    Armageddon reference

    But in all seriousness, couldn't we nuke the sum bitch out of the sky?
  8. Bombing them out of the sky is very likely yes. Break them into smaller pieces so that once they hit the atmosphere they burn up and shrink even more.
  9. It's not always that simple. Especially with space. It's not comic-book stuff up there.
  10. I think it's still unlikely and i think we've mapped the majority of large asteroids (could be wrong)
    See, jupiter actually acts like a big vacuum in our immediate solar system and sucks up the majority of them now.

    I actually read once somewhere that smaller asteroids, traveling at the speed of light could do damage though. That would be a lot more dangerous obv, cuz we couldnt take any action against it, since we wouldnt have a chance to see it. We likely wouldnt see it, until it hit if it was an impact asteroid. We can map them, but one travelling near the speed of light ,wouldnt be visible until way too late
  11. Perhaps, I still don't think something as unpredictable, large and simply daunting as space can be so predictable. Anything can happen.
  13. :mad2:
  14. no

  15. Gohan is right, one huge volcano wiped out the Dinos
  16. Why is it always Mexico?


    Why is it always Mexico?


    Why is it always Mexico?
  17. I thought Xanth ate all the dinosaurs
    :xanth: eats :lady: to extinction
  18. 66 million years, proved. @Stopspot in school i learned the Earth was about 4k, which is laughable, i just have so much trouble believing the Earth itself is 66 million years old, then not believing in life outside of our planet. So many interesting ideas/probabilities.
  19. I'd mark.
  20. Naw it was my dick, I thought I could fuck up Earth but I was wrong. On a side not, the ocean makes good lotion.
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