A meteorite destroyed an ancient city Science

The Dead Sea area was long ago hit by a large meteorite, the destruction of which reached biblical proportions.

New research Scientific Reports series reveals that an explosion in the air equivalent to a thousand Hiroshima bombs destroyed the big city, the surrounding plain and even the plants of its time.

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The ruined city is now known as Tall el-Hammam.

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Tall el-Hammam is just a ruin on a hill on the northeastern edge of the Dead Sea in present-day Jordan. About 3,600 years ago, it was the metropolis of its territory.

It was many times greater than the time of Jerusalem and Jericho. A total of an estimated 50,000 people in the area.

“Mankind’s early Cultural Diversity developed right here,” describes the geologist James Kennett in the bulletin.

Kennett, professor emeritus at the University of California, Santa Barbara, was one of the researchers analyzing the ruins.

The ruins of Tall el-Hammam have long been studied. Remains of ancient buildings and walls can still be seen in the ruins.

Signs of an ancient fire storm have been found in the remains of the ancient city, which, among other things, turned the outer surface of the pots into glass. The ruins are in what is now Jordan. Photo: University of California at Santa Barbara

Years ago, excavations found an unexplained, one and a half meter thick layer of coal, ash, and molten metal.

1,650 years before the beginning of time, the city was so raging by the Storm of Fire that the outer surfaces of the clay pots melted into glass. Temperatures of more than two thousand degrees were required for this.

Examination of the ruins and examination of the remains in the laboratory revealed that only one natural phenomenon can explain such a loaf. The conclusion is that about 3,600 years ago, a piece tens of meters in size plunged into space, exploding high above Tall el-Hammam.

The extent of the destruction corresponded to what was seen in Tunguska. The largest meteor or comet explosion in recent history destroyed more than 2,000 square kilometers of forest in Siberia in 1908.

In the sky of Tall el-Hammam, a kind of nuclear bomb of twenty megatons exploded. That class was the energy released in the Tunguska explosion. It is equivalent to more than a thousand atomic bombs in Hiroshima. Such a heat shock melts the bricks and changes the mineral structure of the stones. So-called shock lamellae are formed in the minerals.

“Perhaps the biggest discovery in this stratum were the quartz shock lamellae. Incredible pressure is required to create them. Quartz is one of the hardest minerals, ”Kennett describes.

Volcanic eruptions and earthquakes are not enough to create shock lamellae in quartz. Such deformations of quartz have only been found in the traces of nuclear experiments or meteorite collision craters.

When the meteorite struck, Tall el-Hammam was a spectacular city. There was a large, five-story palace and high walls.

The meteorite exploded at an estimated altitude of four kilometers. The flash blinded people and the air heated to two thousand degrees. People’s clothes caught fire and soon the whole town was on fire.

Next came a shock wave that was faster than the tornado, with gusts of wind reaching 1,200 kilometers per hour.

“The wind destroyed all the buildings and destroyed the top four floors of the palace. None of the city’s residents and animals survived. Their bodies were torn to pieces and the bones were shattered, ”paints the archaeologist Christopher Moore The Conversation online magazine. Moore was one of the scholars.

Based on archaeological data, the shock wave also destroyed the walls of the city of Jericho. Jericho is located 22 kilometers west of the ruins of Tall el-Hammam.

Researchers also found human remains from that time. There are not many of them left. The bones are shattered and the skulls disintegrated like in the wake of an explosion.

It is also interesting that there is a considerable amount of salt in the layer during the devastation. The salinity is up to 25% in some samples.

Scientists speculate that the explosion may have evaporated so much salt from the nearby Dead Sea that it has rained on the city and the plateau.

It would have made the surrounding area unusable for even centuries. The next signs of settlement in the area are only 600 years after the explosion.


Source: Tiede by www.tiede.fi.

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