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Science & Technology

Huge impact crater discovered in Greenland

November 15, 2018 | Comment icon 53 comments



The crater is one of the most recent large impact craters on Earth. Image Credit: NASA
For the first time ever, scientists have found an impact crater beneath one of the Earth's continental ice sheets.
The 31km-wide crater, which was discovered in northern Greenland, was formed when a devastating asteroid of at least 1km across smacked in to our planet with the energy of 47 million atomic bombs.

"The crater is exceptionally well-preserved, and that is surprising, because glacier ice is an incredibly efficient erosive agent that would have quickly removed traces of the impact," said Professor Kurt H. Kjaer from the Center for GeoGenetics at the Natural History Museum of Denmark.
This suggests that the crater may have actually formed relatively recently.

"So far, it has not been possible to date the crater directly, but its condition strongly suggests that it formed after ice began to cover Greenland, so younger than 3 million years old and possibly as recently as 12,000 years ago - toward the end of the last ice age," said Prof Kjaer.



Source: Science Daily | Comments (53)


Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #44 Posted by Piney 4 years ago
@lost_shaman I found it. https://www.researchgate.net/publication/285753124_The_transition_from_Paleoindian_to_Archaic_in_the_middle_Tennessee_valley
Comment icon #45 Posted by lost_shaman 4 years ago
First thing I note here is that Folsom is absent, the assemblage goes from Clovis to Cumberland with Folsom missing. That said Cumberland dart points seem to have evolved from Folsom technology. With the later Folsom dart points well represented to the West of the Mississippi for example all across Texas and beyond. The former Cumberland dart points as an evolution of Folsom technology seem to have been exclusive to the East of the Mississippi and only later crossed back to the West of the Mississippi as they are only lightly represented West of the Mississippi River valley by a couple of hund... [More]
Comment icon #46 Posted by Piney 4 years ago
I'm not done reading this one yet, but this paper indicates a overlap in the Northeast. https://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/20555563.2016.1212178
Comment icon #47 Posted by lost_shaman 4 years ago
From the Paper,.. " Our “pre-Clovis” designation for these early occupations highlights these temporal differences, and at present, discourages notions of cultural or genetic linkages between pre-Clovis and Clovis as well as later occupations in the Northeast."
Comment icon #48 Posted by Piney 4 years ago
Need human remains for genetics. I said I still have to read it. 
Comment icon #49 Posted by Essan 4 years ago
Just occurred to me that if this impact occurred within the past few tens or even hundreds of thousands of years, there would be a record in the Greenland ice cores and North Atlantic ocean bed mud cores.  Is there?   
Comment icon #50 Posted by Doug1029 4 years ago
We have at least two few tree ring series that go back that far.  It should show up in them. Doug
Comment icon #51 Posted by Doug1029 4 years ago
I looked this up.  There's more like eight or so that go back past the Younger Dryas.  One in New Zealand, still under construction, will go back 60,000 years.  There's even one the University of Missouri is working on that id expected to reach back 17,000 years.  There's more work being done on this in Europe than the US (lack of funding).  Our politicians are afraid we'll learn something about climate change. Doug
Comment icon #52 Posted by Raptor Witness 4 years ago
The Carolina Bays mystery deepens, unless there was a swarm of these, or the giant globs of water thrown into the air were salt water, which might explain some other things. It also might help explain the micro meteor swarm that has also been detected.
Comment icon #53 Posted by and then 4 years ago
I'm just thankful that these things seem to have really long periods between such impacts.  


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