According to a recent research, it has been found out that a meteorite had hit the Isle of Skye in Scotland about 60 million years ago. A group of geologists discovered the evidence of the meteorite impact as well as the meteorite impact area just south of Broadford while exploring the volcanic rocks of the island. At first, they thought that the rock was nothing but a volcanic flow deposit. But, when they carefully analyzed the rock, they found meteoritic minerals beneath the layer of a lava flow occurred due to volcanic activity that took place as far as 61.54 million years ago.
The mineral is believed to be a vanadium-rich and niobium-rich obsornite which is very on Earth. These extremely rare minerals are not found on terrestrial rocks and as per the scientists, these minerals come from outer space. In 2006, NASA’s Stardust Comet Sample Return Mission collected those obsornites as space dust in the wake of comet 2.
When the geologists traced the metal, they found it in an unmelted position which strongly indicates that it was an original piece of the meteorite. During their exploration, they found out another meteorite impact site, seven kilometers away from the first site. They discovered a two-meter thick ejecta layer which posses the same type of strange mineralogy like that of the lava flow. According to the geologists, the lava flow and the ejecta layer indicate that a meteorite impact occurred in that region around 60-60.4 million years ago. Lead author Simon Drake, an associate lecturer in geology at the Birkbeck University of London, along with his colleague Dr. Andy Beard made the discovery on the Island of Sky and revealed that the meteorite impact might possibly be connected to Paleogene volcanic activity across the North Atlantic.
Dr, Drake told that till now they have not been able to measure the size of the impact site. He said that they have found evidence of the impact at two sites and at another potential two sites on the Isle of Skye, at the moment. According to him, this meteorite impact might have played a vital role Skye’s volcanological evolution. “One of the things that is really interesting here is that the volcanological evolution of the Isle of Skye has always been considered to have been started with what’s called a volcanic plume, an enormously large bulk of magma which has come up under what then was the crust that Skye was on,” informed Drake. “We are now suggesting that this may well have been assisted by a meteorite impact.” The scientists analyzed the rocks with the help of electron microprobe and confirmed the meteorite impact.