Earth 4 billion years ago

These are Earth and Moon in the Hadean epoch, 4 billion years ago, pummeled by large impacts letting magma flow out and at the same time, some parts of Earth’s surface could have retained liquid water.   Image credit  Simone Marchi.    Watch the video…

Planetary scientist at the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado, lead study author Simone Marchi, said:

“It was thought that because of these asteroids and comets flying around colliding with Earth, conditions on early Earth may have been hellish.

We also looked at highly siderophile elements (elements that bind tightly to iron), such as gold, delivered to Earth as a result of these early collisions, and the amounts of these elements tells us the total mass accreted by Earth as the result of these collisions.”

Earth 4 billion years ago 2

This artist’s illustration shows a close-up of the early Earth, revealing magma extrusion on the surface. Credit: Simone Marchi