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  • Cited by 7
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    This article has been cited by the following publications. This list is generated based on data provided by CrossRef.

    Burchell, Mark J. Bowden, Stephen A. Cole, Michael Price, Mark C. and Parnell, John 2014. Survival of Organic Materials in Hypervelocity Impacts of Ice on Sand, Ice, and Water in the Laboratory. Astrobiology, Vol. 14, Issue. 6, p. 473.

    Price, M.C. Solscheid, C. Burchell, M.J. Josse, L. Adamek, N. and Cole, M.J. 2013. Survival of yeast spores in hypervelocity impact events up to velocities of 7.4kms−1. Icarus, Vol. 222, Issue. 1, p. 263.

    Burchell, M. J. Parnell, J. Bowden, S. A. and Crawford, I. A. 2010. Hypervelocity Impact Experiments in the Laboratory Relating to Lunar Astrobiology. Earth, Moon, and Planets, Vol. 107, Issue. 1, p. 55.

    PARNELL, John BOWDEN, Stephen LINDGREN, Paula BURCHELL, Mark MILNER, Daniel PRICE, Mark BALDWIN, Emily C. and CRAWFORD, Ian A. 2010. The preservation of fossil biomarkers during meteorite impact events: Experimental evidence from biomarker-rich projectiles and target rocks. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, Vol. 45, Issue. 8, p. 1340.

    Jerling, Aaron Burchell, Mark J. and Tepfer, David 2008. Survival of seeds in hypervelocity impacts. International Journal of Astrobiology, Vol. 7, Issue. 3-4, p. 217.

    MILNER, D. J. BALDWIN, E. C. and BURCHELL, M. J. 2008. Laboratory investigations of marine impact events: Factors influencing crater formation and projectile survivability. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, Vol. 43, Issue. 12, p. 2015.

    Baldwin, E. C. Milner, D. J. Burchell, M. J. and Crawford, I. A. 2007. Laboratory impacts into dry and wet sandstone with and without an overlying water layer: Implications for scaling laws and projectile survivability. Meteoritics & Planetary Science, Vol. 42, Issue. 11, p. 1905.

  • International Journal of Astrobiology, Volume 5, Issue 3
  • July 2006, pp. 261-267

Oceanic hypervelocity impact events: a viable mechanism for successful panspermia?

  • D.J. Milner (a1), M.J. Burchell (a1), J.A. Creighton (a1) and J. Parnell (a2)
  • DOI:
  • Published online: 16 October 2006

The idea that life migrates naturally between planetary bodies has grown in strength in recent years. This idea (panspermia) is believed to be possible via the mechanism of impact events. Previous research on this topic has concentrated on small meteoroids (micrometres to centimetres in diameter), with giant objects (metres to kilometres in diameter) being relatively ignored. This is due to the common belief that the larger objects vaporize on impact with the Earth's surface, which in most studies is taken as rock. Here we examine experimentally whether hypervelocity impacts into water result in significant survival of the impactors. For this study the University of Kent's two-stage light gas gun was used to accelerate millimetre-sized shale projectiles obliquely into a relatively deep water layer, at approximately 5 km s−1. Two shots have been made with surviving fragments being recovered from each. The surviving fragments appear highly shocked and display clear signs of cracking. The fragments that have been isolated contribute to a significant percentage (~10%) of the original unfired projectile mass and are as large as ~20% of the original projectile diameter. This indicates that oceanic hypervelocity impact events of large asteroids may deliver significant volumes of solid material to the Earth and thus provide a possible mechanism for successful panspermia.

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International Journal of Astrobiology
  • ISSN: 1473-5504
  • EISSN: 1475-3006
  • URL: /core/journals/international-journal-of-astrobiology
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