An Australian researcher has found new evidence that an asteroid struck the continent more than 300 million years ago. The asteroid produced a shock-zone that was more than 80 km leaving it the second largest to ever hit Australia. She discovered it while studying the Cooper River Basin. She came across Quartz that had an unusual deformation pattern that suggested it had either been exposed to extreme tectonic pressure, or a large asteroid had formed it. It was confirmed that it was from asteroid impact after several tests had been ran on the Quartz.
During the impact, a huge explosion was created and formed boiling ground water that triggered chemical and mineralogy changes in the surrounding rock. This may be linked to the reason the Cooper River Basin is such a reliable source for geothermal energy today. The land surface that was originally struck by the asteroid is believed to have eroded away and is now covered by various sedimentary rocks.
This impact runs in second place compared to the impact sight at Woodleigh which is east of Shark Bay in Western Australia. The Woodleigh impact is 120km in diameter and was produced by an asteroid that was 6-12km across. This is estimated to have occurred around 360 million years ago. Further research is being conducted to reassure the measurements and theories of this impact.