Minneapolis – While NASA is trying to change the course of an asteroid, scientists at the University of Minnesota have made a startling discovery.
Geologists believe that a massive meteorite crashed into what is now Inver Grove Heights about 500 million years ago.
It was supposed to be a typical geologic remapping of Dakota, but instead, scientists at the Minnesota Geological Survey discovered something out of this world.
Geologist Julia Steinberg believes they have found the site of a meteorite crash. The crater under Inver Grove Heights extends about 2.5 miles, and is 490 million years old.
You cannot see its traces above ground. But if you’re driving on Highway 52, you’ll likely be driving over the meteor site. The real evidence can be found only 350 feet underground.
“We noticed that the sand grains had a very special appearance that they looked like they had been bumped or fractured, and some data showed that the rocks had actually been reflected,” Steenberg said.
They call it the “pine curvature effect.” If verified, it would be Minnesota’s first meteorite site, among only 190 known sites nationwide.
Scientists estimate the area of the crater is 11 times the size of the iconic meteorite crater in Arizona. Steenberg says a discovery like this allows them to learn more about our past and look to the future.
About a third of known meteorite sites are buried, such as the one at Inver Grove Heights. Steinberg is trying to publish her findings and add the site to the official census.
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