posted on Feb, 8 2013 @ 09:26 PM
The title should read "New evidence that asteroid impact dealt the dinosaurs a quick death blow". Science doesn't deal in proof. It deals in
probabilities. The probability on this one however, is quite high.
Currently, the main suspect behind this catastrophe is a cosmic impact from an asteroid or comet, an idea first proposed by physicist Luis Alvarez
and his son, geologist Walter Alvarez. Scientists later found that signs of this collision seemed evident near the town of Chicxulub
(CHEEK-sheh-loob) in Mexico in the form of a gargantuan crater more than 110 miles (180 kilometers) wide. The explosion, likely caused by an
object about 6 miles (10 kilometers) across, would have released as much energy as 100 trillion tons of TNT, more than a billion times more than the
atom bombs that destroyed Hiroshima and Nagasaki.
I'd have never thought the impact that helped finish off the Dino's was right here in the America's.
(Image Caption) Near Jordan, Mont., rock layers expose the level (lower arrow) where dinosaurs and many other animals and plants went extinct. The
arrows point to coal beds that contain thin volcanic ash layers that were dated.
Although the cosmic impact and mass extinction coincided in time, Renne cautioned this does not mean the impact was the only cause of the
die-offs. For instance, dramatic climate swings in the preceding million years, including long cold snaps in the general hothouse environment of the
Cretaceous, probably brought many creatures to the brink of extinction. The volcanic eruptions behind the Deccan Traps might be one cause of these
The article says the date is within 11,000 years of accuracy using radiometric dating analysis. That's impressive.
To sum it up, they believe extinction was already inevitable, and had been coming on for the previous million or so years. The asteroid impact was
just the final blow that finished them off.
I think what is almost as interesting as the results of their findings, is the accuracy that has developed over time, allowing our sciences to be much
more precise in dating techniques as they're refined.
edit on 2/8/2013 by Klassified because: Corrections