One of the greatest extinctions Earth has ever seen was recorded around 66 million years ago with the asteroid impact in the Chicxulub region, which is believed to have wiped out the dinosaurs. However, this is not the only time a star rock has hit Earth, as another iconic impact occurred 50,000 years ago and its crater is intact.
It appears that the impact was recorded very recently and not 50,000 years ago, as science has studied. This is the Barringer crater, a true scientific vestige allowing us to understand the influence of asteroids on the Earth and other worlds.
This crater has a diameter of 1.2 kilometers and a depth of 170 meters. It is located in the Arizona desert, United States. It was formed about 50,000 years ago, when a 50-meter iron-nickel meteorite struck the Earth at a speed of about 12 kilometers per second.
It was discovered in 1891 by Grove geologist Karl Gilbert, who initially thought it was of volcanic origin. However, in 1903, geologist Daniel Moreau Barringer proposed that the crater was formed by the impact of a meteorite.
Barringer’s hypothesis was controversial at the time of its discovery, as there were many theories about the crater that were not scientific.
However, in the years since, much evidence has been found to support the information that it was a crater.
In 1920, fragments of the meteorite were found at the bottom of the crater. In 1960, a layer of impact-disturbed material was discovered at the bottom of the crater. In 1965, a similar impact was discovered on the Moon, providing further evidence that impact craters can form on Earth.
In mid-2023, the crater looks like this in video recorded from a helicopter flying over the area.
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