Over four billion years ago, the Earth was bombarded with giant asteroids, researchers have confirmed. Scientists from academic and government institutions, including NASA's Solar System Exploration Research Virtual Institute (SSERVI) published the new findings in the July 31, 2014 issue of Nature, in a paper entitled "Widespread Mixing and Burial of Earth's Hadean Crust by Asteroid Impacts".
The scientists have built a model describing the role of asteroids in the formation of the Earth’s uppermost crust during the “Hadean” geologic eon. Yvonne Pendleton, SSERVI Director at Ames told NASA that "this new model helps explain how repeated asteroid impacts may have buried Earth's earliest and oldest rocks."
The new research shows how asteroidal collisions massively altered the geology of the Hadean eon Earth, and that these events were likely to have played a major role in the subsequent evolution of life on Earth as well.
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