Image: Don Davis / NASA
Scientists from the University of Hamburg in Germany have identified the mechanism of an ancient impact crater Chicxulub, which was formed in the late Cretaceous period of an asteroid impact with a diameter of about 10 kilometers. This allowed us to explain the emergence of such mysterious structures as the Central upland, and the peak ring inside the ring of larger diameter. About it reported in a press release on EurekAlert!.
Chicxulub is located on the Yucatan Peninsula and is the largest of the ancient impact craters on Earth. Its diameter is about 180 kilometers. In the core Chixulub is a ring of hills, which reach heights of several hundred meters. Such education is found in other craters on celestial bodies of the Solar system.
Scientists conducted a computer simulation of the behavior of the earth’s crust under extreme mechanical impact. In the first few seconds of the asteroid strike rock, heated to 10 million degrees Celsius, behaves like a liquid, but quickly hardens, forming a crater. The researchers were able to confirm the hypothesis of acoustic fluidization, when the vibrations from the sound waves when struck turn the mass of fragments into a viscous mass.
At the time of falling of an asteroid formed a deep Caldera 100 kilometers and a depth of 30 kilometers. Since that time, the rock behaves like a viscous liquid, it fills the crater, and at last formed a giant “mountain” with a height of 20 kilometers. Then “the mountain” continues and the rock begins to solidify. The crater flattens and expands, and raises the analogous ripple — peak ring.
Video, photo All from Russia.