Geologist Ludovic Ferrière travels the world looking for undiscovered affect craters left behind by asteroids and comets placing Earth. He tells us how he finds them


2 August 2022

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Wolfe Creek meteorite affect crater in Western Australia

Nabil Nezzar

CRATERS attributable to the affect of asteroids or comets way back are extra widespread on Earth than you may suppose. They’re only a whole lot trickier to find than these peppering the barren, unchanging floor of the moon. Nevertheless, discovering them can reveal particulars of prehistoric occasions which have had a long-lasting affect, as typified by the crater left behind by the asteroid affect that ended the reign of the dinosaurs.

Geologist Ludovic Ferrière is the curator of the meteorite assortment on the Pure Historical past Museum Vienna in Austria, however he has a sideline in crater searching – a troublesome and harmful pursuit that has taken him to a number of the world’s most distant locations and even seen him spend time in jail.

Joshua Howgego: Why do you wish to discover undiscovered craters?

Ludovic Ferrière: What motivates me most of all – other than the journey of travelling to those distant locations – is the potential for making a brand new discovery. That is nothing uncommon. We people wish to uncover new issues, we’re a curious species.

From a scientific perspective, folks get enthusiastic about affect craters as a result of we now know that one single asteroid affect can have penalties on the size of the entire planet, just like the Chicxulub impactor, a 12-kilometre-wide asteroid that hit Earth 66 million years in the past close to the place the coast of Mexico is at the moment. It left behind a crater roughly 180 kilometres large – one of many largest confirmed affect buildings of its sort – and led to the extinction of 75 per cent of all of the plant and animal species on the …

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