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A massive meteorite impact and extreme volcanic activity occurred around the same time that Earth's large dinosaurs went extinct. But, did the volcanic activity play a role in the mass extinction, or did it actually help new life to flourish?
Sixty-six million years ago, an asteroid smashed into Earth, creating the Chicxulub crater, which is 124 miles (200 kilometers) wide and is now buried underneath the Yucatán Peninsula in Mexico. The aftereffects of the impact caused a mass extinction, decimating Earth's dinosaur population. Just around this same time (within less than a million years), about 310,685 miles (500,000 km) of lava erupted from the Deccan Traps, a large, igneous volcanic province, and flowed over most of India and into the ocean.
Researchers - Study - Look - Mass - Extinction
Researchers in a new study have taken a closer look at what actually caused the mass extinction event, and whether or not the volcanic activity at the Deccan Traps, which happened to occur at a similar time, could've helped to shape the future of life on our planet.
Scientists continue to debate and study the relationship between these two catastrophic events. Are the impact and volcanic activity actually related to each other? "The short answer is, it looks like an amazing coincidence," Pincelli Hull, an author on this new study, told Space.com, referring to the short amount of time between the two events. "But people keep trying to figure out if they're mechanistically linked, at least in part."
Study - Consensus - Events - Activity - Mass
According to this new study, there is still no concrete consensus on how (or if) the two events might have been related, and it's possible that the volcanic activity might have also contributed to the mass extinction. It's likely, however, that the asteroid impact was the primary cause of the extinction.
To come to this conclusion, the team focused on outgassing from...
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