Stanford University Press

Dinosaurs, Diamonds, and Things from Outer Space: The Great Extinction

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ISBN: 9780804724944
Publisher: Stanford University Press
Publication Date: 1995-06-01
Number of pages: 241
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This book explains, in a new and convincing theory, why most life on earth perished 65 million years ago. Intended for a broad audience, the book will also be of great interest to scientists - most of whom now agree that an object from outer space hit the earth with unimaginable force 65 million years ago. But what kind of object? Carlisle's scenario suggests that the event was a complex sequence, beginning with a nearby star turning supernova. The first effect of this on earth was the arrival of massive radiation, ten or twenty times the heat of the sun, igniting worldwide forest fires. The blast also perturbed the cloud of comets that surrounds the solar system, and some few centuries later one or more of these (loaded with interstellar diamonds) hit the earth, producing 'nuclear winter' and causing a tremendous acidification of the oceans. Each step of this theory is backed up by hard evidence.

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