New Paper: A link between terrestrial extinctions and the Milkyway galaxy?

Astrophysics Group

A new paper has been published by Dr Michael Gillman (University of Lincoln, School of Life Sciences), Dr Hilary Erenler (University of Northampton, Faculty of Arts, Science and Technology) and Dr Phil Sutton (University of Lincoln, School of Mathematics and Physics) in the International Journal of Astrobiology.  The paper “Mapping the location of terrestrial impacts and extinctions onto the spiral arm structure of the Milky Way” looks at data from asteroid impacts, as well as other significant historic changes in the climate of Earth, and the location of the Solar System in the Milkyway galaxy. It was found that asteroid impacts, relating to mass extinction events on Earth, were clustered around the passages through the higher density regions of the spiral arms. As stars orbit the centre of galaxies they pass through the dense spiral arms (caused by density waves). Stars that move closer to one another can…

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