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Chicxulub, Yucatan Peninsula, Mexico

Target Name:  Earth
Produced by:  V. L. Sharpton, LPI

Related Document
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NameTypeWidth x HeightSize
chicxulb.gifGIF512 x 512103K

Location21°20'N, 89°30'W
Diameter170 km
Age64.98 million years

This three-dimensional map of local gravity and magnetic field variations shows a multiringed structure called Chicxulub named after a village located near its center. The impact basin is buried by several hundred meters of sediment, hiding it from view. This image shows the basin viewed obliquely from approximately 60° above the surface looking north, with artificial lighting from the south. The image covers 88 to 90.5° west longitude and 19.5 to 22.5° north latitude. NASA scientists believe that an asteroid 10 to 20 kilometers (6 to 12 miles) in diameter produced this impact basin. The asteroid hit a geologically unique, sulfur-rich region of the Yucatan Peninsula and kicked up billions of tons of sulfur and other materials into the atmosphere. Darkness prevailed for about half a year after the collision. This caused global temperatures to plunge near freezing. Half of the species on Earth became extinct including the dinosaurs.

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