Asteroid impacts on the Moon millions of years ago correspond to massive space rock impacts here on Earth – including the massive impact that wiped out the nonavian dinosaurs.
The finding reveals that major impacts in Earth’s prehistory were not isolated events. Instead, these asteroid strikes were accompanied by a series of smaller hits, both here and around the world. moonIts surface is filled with more than 9,000 craters left by space rock impacts.
The research could help astronomers better understand the dynamics of the inner universe. solar system and to help calculate the probability of our planet being hit by huge potentially devastating space rocks in the future.
Related: Hunt for asteroid impacts on the moon heats up with new observatories
Scientists from Curtin University’s Center for Space Science and Technology (SSTC) in Australia obtained the results by studying microscopic glass beads in returned lunar soil samples. Soil by china Chang’e-5 Moon mission in 2020.
These tiny glass beads were created by the intense heat and pressure produced by meteor impacts. This means researchers can reconstruct a lunar bombardment timeline by assessing the ages of these beads.
While the SSTC team does this, both timing and frequency are asteroid Effects on the Moon were mirrored by space rock strikes on Earth, meaning the timeline the team created can offer insight into the evolution of our planet.
“We combined a wide variety of microscopic analytical techniques, numerical modeling and geological investigations to determine how and when these microscopic glass beads from the moon formed,” lead study author Alexander Nemchin, a professor at SSTC, said in a statement.
The ages of some of the moon glass beads indicated that they were created about 66 million years ago. dinosaur killing asteroidKnown as the Chicxulub impactor impact, it struck Earth near Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula in what is now the Gulf of Mexico.
The impact led to what’s known as the Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction event, ultimately killing three-quarters of all life on Earth, including non-avian dinosaurs.
The approximately 6.2-mile-wide (10 kilometers) Chicxulub impactor slammed into Earth at approximately 12 miles per second (19.3 kilometers per second) or 43,200 miles (69,524 km/h) and was about 93 miles (150 km) wide. It left the crater and is 12 miles (19 km) deep. Along with the shock waves created by the initial impact, the asteroid impact caused a number of life-altering chain effects, including the following. throwing thick dust clouds that block the sun.
The SSTC’s new research joins other studies that suggest that the space rock that killed these monstrous dinosaurs may have been joined by other, smaller asteroids that also struck Earth, which could be uncovered by studying the history of asteroid impacts on the moon.
“The study also found that major impact events on Earth, such as the Chicxulub crater 66 million years ago, may have been accompanied by a series of smaller impacts,” Nemchin said. Said. “If this is true, it suggests that age-frequency distributions of impacts on the Moon could provide valuable information about impacts on Earth or the inner solar system.”
The team now aims to compare data collected from the Chang’e-5 lunar soil samples with other soil samples from the moon and the ages of craters on the lunar surface. This analysis could reveal other impact events on the Moon and in turn help reveal signs of asteroid impacts that may have affected life here on Earth.
The research was published Wednesday, September 28 in the journalism. Science Advances.
Follow us on Twitter @Spacedotcom and he Facebook.
Leave a Comment