This Is What Earth Looked Like 4 Billion Years Ago
At the beginning I have to say that we have a very thin picture of what was happening at a time when the earth was formed. But a new research project aims to show exactly how our planet looked 4 billion years ago.
Basically? Hell on Earth.
Earth formed around 4.54 billion (4.54×109) years ago by accretion from the solar nebula. Volcanic outgassing probably created the primordial atmosphere, but it contained almost no oxygen and would have been toxic to humans and most modern life.
Earth and Moon in the Hadean epoch were pummeled by large impacts letting magma flow out. But, at the same time, some parts of Earth’s surface could have retained liquid water, allowing pre-biotic compounds to form; perhaps even life itself.
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Planetary scientist at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado, lead study author Simone Marchi, said:
“It was thought that because of these asteroids and comets flying around colliding with Earth, conditions on early Earth may have been hellish. We also looked at highly siderophile elements (elements that bind tightly to iron), such as gold, delivered to Earth as a result of these early collisions, and the amounts of these elements tells us the total mass accreted by Earth as the result of these collisions.”
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