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Multiple K-T boundary impacts?? (Re: Like a wool sweater in the washer...)
> T. Van Flandern, the author of the above quote asserts that the K/T
> at hand are best explained by the exploded planet hypothesis.
> (Van Flandern, Tom; "Chixulub Crater 'Shrinks', Now Too Small to
> Caused Mass Extinctions," *Meta Research Bulletin*, 12:47, no. 3,
Uhh....."Exploded planet hypothesis"?? Hmmm. Never heard of it.
Clearly, I need to get out more often.
Keep in mind that astronomers now estimate that roughly 20% of all large
asteroids have companion asteroids locked in orbit. Gaspra-Dactyl is one
example that the Gallileo spacecraft photographed while on its way to
Jupiter. The Earth-crossing asteroid Totoutis<sp> is a dumbbell-shaped
dual asteroid in which both asteroids are in a co-orbit (the two
Totoutis<sp> components are actually in contact). Other single asteroids
and comets are just gravitationally-held accumulations of loose debris
which can be smeared out into an impactor string if the asteroid/comet
passes by a large gravitational source, such as Jupiter, which pulls
apart the accumulated mass. The comet Shoemaker-Levy was an example of
an "impactor string".
The Chixulub impactor may simply have been one component of an
accumulation of asteroids that were gravitationally locked. The
possibility of multiple K-T boundary impacts, separated by minutes or
hours, is not statistically insignificant. (The Manson crater doesn't
count; it is millions of years older).
Remember that the Earth rotates from west to east. If later impact(s)
occured in the Pacific Basin, subsequent subduction of the affected part
of the Pacific Tectonic Plate under South America may have removed any
evidence of the bullet wound. (However, see:
Kerr, R.A. 1996. A piece of the dinosaur killer found? Science 271:1806.
Kyte, F.T. 1998. A meteorite from the Cretaceous/Tertiary boundary.
Nature 396: 237-239.)
All of the above info is widely known in the paleo/astronomy community,
is not a new idea, and does not require special pleading (IMHO, an
"exploding planet" is an example of special pleading). ;-)
I've exceeded my blab ration for the day.
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