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In Search of Crater Chains


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As the fragments of shattered comet 73P/Schwassmann Wachmann 3 glide harmlessly past Earth this weekend in full view of backyard telescopes, onlookers can't help but wonder, what if a comet like that didn't miss, but actually hit our planet?

For the answer to that question, we look to the Sahara desert.

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In a remote windswept area named Aorounga, in Chad, there are three craters in a row, each about 10 km in diameter. "We believe this is a 'crater chain' formed by the impact of a fragmented comet or asteroid about 400 million years ago in the Late Devonian period," explains Adriana Ocampo of NASA headquarters.

http://tinyurl.com/m3sgl

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