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Post Info TOPIC: Eltanin Impact Structure


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Ancient asteroid delivered deadly double-punch

A new study suggests a massive asteroid impact two and a half million years ago would have created a mega-tsunami and plunged the world into a severe ice age.
The report, published in the Journal of Quaternary Science, suggests the impact accelerated a change in climatic conditions already occurring between the Pliocene and Pleistocene epochs.
Lead author, Professor James Goff from the Australia-Pacific Tsunami Research Centre at the University of New South Wales, says the two-kilometre-wide Eltanin asteroid slammed into the Pacific Ocean about 1500 kilometres west of Chile.

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An asteroid between one and four km in diameter splashed into the Southern Ocean, 1500 km SW of Chile, and may have worsened a period of global cooling that saw the emergence of modern humans... At the time of the Eltanin impact, Homo erectus was emerging in Africa



The Eltanin crater is located in the Bellinghausen Sea, south of the Pacific Ocean, is a possible result of an abyssal oceanic impact event of the late Pliocene. The Eltanin impact event occurred at 2.150.5 Million years ago and littered the oceanic floor with asteroidal debris. This debris is found within the Eltanin Impact Layer that was first discovered as an Iridium anomaly in 1981.



In 2004 a possible source crater was found at 5747' S , 9047' W under 5000 meters of water. The crater is 1325km in diameter, much larger than the previously proposed size of 24 to 80 km.
microtektites of potassium feldspar spherules were found in the ejecta blanket. The spherules melted in the vapour cloud of the impact and solidified in spherical form. The maximum spherule concentrations are found 95 cm below the top of the impact layer.

The impact would have produced a 200300 m high tsunami to the Antarctic Peninsula and the southern tip of South America 12001500 km away. 60 m waves would have struck New Zealand, 6000 km away.



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