Fr.: impact cosmique
A collision between two celestial objects, specially solar system bodies, with considerable consequences. Impact events involve release of large amounts of energy. Some examples are the 1908 Siberian → Tunguska event by a → comet, the → Barringer Crater, and the collision of an → asteroid with Earth 65 million years ago, which is thought to have led to the extinction of the dinosaurs and other species of the → Cretaceous-Paleogene period.