Scientists have found evidence that nearly all life on Earth was wiped out by massive impact with an extraterrestrial object, such as a comet, eons before dinosaurs ruled the planet.
Nowhere on the planet was safe - 90% of life in the ocean, and 70% of all living organisms became extinct in an amazingly short period of time. It took a mere 8,000 to 100,000 years, what a scientist called "a microsecond in geologic time."
Luann Becker, lead author of the study, gathered the evidence through examining "buckyballs," carbon formations with a hollow cage inside. Within the buckeyballs, she discovered isotopes dating to that time, which could not have originated on Earth.