Asteroid collision is a devastating event, which is a threat to the future of human development. When a giant celestial chunk slammed into Earth’s surface before millions of years ago, it had destroyed the planet entirely. Before this, scientists have argued regarding the impact of mass extinction. Some also have revealed suppositions pointing to an interruption of the Earth’s atmosphere. But the latest study, conducted by researchers from Yale University, validates long-established postulate regarding the ancient mass extinction incident. It also focuses on the impact of the event on Earth’s ocean. Apart from this, the research might unveil mysteries of eventual recovery of marine life.
The finding is the first direct proof that the so-called Cretaceous-Paleogene extinction had occurred simultaneously with a significant fall in the pH levels of the oceans. As per scientists, the event which took place around 66 million years ago, had contributed to a massive rise of acidity in oceans. A meteor collision into Earth at the edge of the Cretaceous period had resulted in the Cretaceous-Paleogene, K-Pg, extinction incident. The impact and its after-effects had slaughtered around 75% of the planet. Even more, it had resulted in the extinction of many plant and animal species, including the ammonites and non-avian dinosaurs.
Scientists have analyzed various places like the Brazos Rives in Texas, Owl Creek in Mississippi, and the Geulhemmerberg Cave. Apart from this, they have studied deep-sea drill cores to portray a picture of subsequent days of the asteroid impact. The team of scientists has noted that Earth’s ocean did not have increased acidic levels before the asteroid hit. But later, there took place a massive fall in pH levels of ocean water, which made them more acidic.
Before this, a study has revealed that the mass extinction might have eradicated some marine calcifiers. Those are types of animals having skeletons and shells made up of calcium carbonate. The latest study pinpoints that higher ocean acidity or low pH levels might have obstructed these animals from developing their shells. The study’s senior author, Prof. Pincelli Hull, said they had noticed levels of ocean acidification, which could have initiated mass extinction in deep-sea. The team has published the research on Monday in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.