Unexpected version found scientists who studied the famous causes of the Ordovician extinction. It occurred at about 466 million years ago and wiped out 85% of species and 60% of genera of marine invertebrates.

Recall that for all time of existence of life on Earth, there have been six major mass extinctions. The latest happened about 65,5 million years ago after dinosaurs disappeared. It is the reason why scientists call the fall to Earth a huge meteorite. The explosion lifted into the air a huge amount of dust, causing almost instant sharp temperature drop that dramatically changed the climate. The planet turned into a ball of ice.

Very different was the Ordovician extinction. It was not instantaneous, but gradual, lasted about two million years, allowing species of flora and fauna to adapt to climate change. To such conclusion the group of scientists that has studied the breed age of about 466 million years. They are looking for items almost no contained in terrestrial rocks, as well as isotopes, indicating that the carrier arrived from space. Such “evidence” was discovered. This extraterrestrial helium, it differs from ours only by one neutron. It would seem, a trifle, but for science it’s an obvious sign of cosmic origin.

What caused such a “soft” scenario of climate change? According to scientists, it is the collision of two giant asteroids between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter that occurred roughly 466 million years ago. It threw huge amounts of dust, which, when reaching the Earth, polluted the atmosphere of our planet, reducing over two million years the temperature by about ten degrees Celsius. But in contrast to the variant with the asteroid impact on the Earth, it accumulated gradually over millions of years.

These early developments gave scientists an idea to combat impending global warming. They propose to place in orbit of the planet several analogues of asteroids, which will continuously release a fine dust and partially block the sunlight. According to the authors ideas, this soft option is good for those that have already been tested by nature. So, we already know what to prepare. In contrast to those offered today by other researchers. The work was published in Science Advances.