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solar system galaxy , mass extinctions , ET mechanism.docx

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GEOL 2207

solar system / galaxy , mass extinctions , ET mechanism Impact risk and mitigation Our place in the solar system / galaxy • Describe the type and location of potential impactors and rate of meteoroid influx  Comets: “dirty snowballs”, commonly around 15km in diameter, come from the Oort Cloud and Kuiper Belt o Solar winds sublime ice  tail o Fall into inner solar system, earth cross orbits o Comet Halley 74-79 years o Comet Hale-Bopp back again in 2380 years o November every year: Leonid Meteor Shower o Tail of comet Tempel-tuttle (33 year return time) o Creates a band of meteoroid debris  Asteroids o Smaller than planets, larger than meteoroids (sand-boulder sized) o Common in a series of belts between Mars and Jupiter o 100 000 million every 24 hours o Most burn up entirely 60km above surface, shall angles Periodicity of mass extinctions and possible ET driving mechanisms • Describe the hypothesis proposed by Raup and Sepkoski  Related to Oort cloud? (Comets)  Predicted that extinctions occur every 26-30 million years  Gravitational kicks from:  Nemesis – companion sun  red dwarf star, black hole?  Planet X?  Moving through Galactic Plane?  Just been
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