D. VAN RAVENSWAAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY D. VAN RAVENSWAAY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Chicxulub impact. Artwork of the meteorite impact at Chicxulub on the Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico. This impact may have caused the extinction of the dinosaurs and 70% of all Earth's species 65 million years ago. The meteorite was an asteroid or comet core which is thought to have been 10-20 kilometres (km) across. The impact created a 180- km wide crater and threw trillions of tonnes of dust (white plume) into the upper atmosphere. This may have blocked the Sun's light and caused global climate changes. The remains of this debris are found worldwide as a layer in rocks known as the 'K T boundary'. Other impacts like this in Earth's future are a statistical certainty.
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