Extinction-level Asteroid Impact Triggered Mega Earthquakes that Shook Earth for ‘Weeks to Months’
Remember the asteroid that struck Earth a million years ago then wiped out all of the dinosaurs during the Cretaceous period? Well that specific asteroid actually left an aftermath that shook the planet for weeks to months.
It was said that the destructive asteroid attack that wiped out the dinosaurs from existence may possibly have triggered a mega earthquake that oscillated planet Earth and lasted for weeks to months.
It was dubbed as the Chicxulub asteroid. It struck Earth approximately 66 million years ago, resulting in an enormous crater that spans a 180 km wide area that subsequently formed the Yucatan Peninsula.
The asteroid explosion sparked a series of chaotic events that, when combined with the impact on the first strike, annihilated roughly 75% of the Earth's population.
For many years, geologists and seismologists have agreed that earthquakes are primarily caused by seismic activity triggered by the abrupt movement of tectonic plates just beneath our planet. In addition to this, tremors are also caused by sudden volcanic eruptions, which is why the term volcanic earthquakes was invented. Because of this, many theories have been created about earthquakes being triggered by kinetic activity alone.
In accordance with a press release from the Geological Society of America (GSA), the mega earthquake that shook the earth briefly after dinosaurs had become extinct during the Cretaceous period was 50,000 times more powerful than the level 9.1 magnitude earthquake that decimated Sumatra back in 2004.
The disturbance caused by the intensity punctured through the layer of sediment from the point where the asteroid impacted until the team unearthed the small glass spheres on Gorgonilla Island.
According to geological and seismic evidence, the mega earthquake could have lasted for weeks or even months, depending on how long it took for the debris that came from the impact to fall from the atmosphere, and eventually the aquatic environment to land on the seabed.
When combined with the tsunamis caused by the aftermath and debris flung by the catastrophic event, the damage caused by the mega earthquake would have been more than doubled.
According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), they are hoping that their first planetary defense mission will successively create a successful strategic plan that could potentially one day save the lives of humanity from the dangers of outer space debris such as comets and asteroids.