We Must Fear Rock Composition Rather Than the Size of a Meteorite That Approaches the Earth, Study Finds

We Must Fear Rock Composition Rather Than the Size of a Meteorite That Approaches the Earth, Study Finds
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Let’s face it: it’s impossible to imagine our lives without our beloved Earth. Surely some of us had moments when we wanted to move to another planet, as the reasons could be endless. We might have enough of the scandals, the poverty, the corruption, the natural disasters, the wars, we might hate Joe Biden too much, and so on.

But we certainly cannot complain about the weather, although many of us do that as well sometimes. But compared to how it is on other planets, the weather on Earth is paradise.

Jokes aside, for now! When it comes to meteorites and asteroids, you don’t have to be a scientist to realize that an impact with such an object can mean the end of the world for us. But as we’re all intimidated by huge meteorites similar to the asteroid that wiped out the dinosaurs tens of millions of years ago, a new study that SciTechDaily.com writes about raises the alarm about another aspect: rock composition.

Mineralogy of the rocks will determine how devastating an impact would be

A research team from the University of Liverpool and from the Instituto Tecnológico y de Energías Renovables, Tenerife, analyzed 44 impacts of meteorites over the last 600 million years.

The new study claims that meteorites that collide with rocks rich in potassium feldspar will always lead to mass extinction. In this case, size doesn’t matter anymore.

Dr. Chris Stevenson, Lverpool sedimentologist from the University’s School of Earth, Ocean and Ecological Sciences, declared as quoted by SciTechDaily.com:

For decades scientists have puzzled over why some meteorites cause mass extinctions, and others, even really big ones, don’t.

He also added, as cited by the same source:

Using this new method for assessing the mineral content of the meteorite ejecta blankets, we show that every time a meteorite, big or small, hits rocks rich in potassium feldspar it correlates with a mass extinction event.

The new findings were published in the Journal of the Geological Society of London.


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Cristian Antonescu

Even since he was a child, Cristian was staring curiously at the stars, wondering about the Universe and our place in it. Today he's seeing his dream come true by writing about the latest news in astronomy. Cristian is also glad to be covering health and other science topics, having significant experience in writing about such fields.

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