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Scientists discover massive asteroid impact zone in Australia

Published on Feb 20, 2013 12:28 PM

SYDNEY (AFP) - Scientists have discovered a massive 200-kilometre impact zone in the Australian outback they believe was caused by an asteroid which smashed into Earth more than 300 million years ago.

Andrew Glikson, a visiting fellow at the Australian National University, said the asteroid measuring 10 to 20 kilometres in diameter was a giant compared to the plunging meteor which exploded above Russia a week ago.

That event set off a shockwave that shattered windows and hurt almost 1,000 people in the Urals city of Chelyabinsk, but Dr Glikson said the consequences of the Australian event would have been global.

"This is a new discovery," Dr Glikson told AFP on Wednesday of the impact zone in South Australia's East Warburton Basin.

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