The supernova could boost the appearance of lightning in the Earth’s atmosphere that resulted in fires.
Scientists Adrian Melott and Brian Thomas said that the transition of hominids to walking upright could be associated with the explosion of a supernova that occurred in the distant past. As reported by the online edition of the Chronicle.info with reference to zn.ua the explosion of a distant supernova caused the appearance of lightning in the Earth’s atmosphere, which led to fires that have cleared the space of the Savannah and forced human ancestors to start walking on two legs.
According to researchers, the first hominid that moved to the upright posture was sahelanthropus, the remains of which are dated nearly seven million years. The reduction of forests, which forced them to move to Savannah, associated with thunderstorms and fires. However, in the new study, scientists have suggested that Earth in that distant time was influenced by one or several supernovae, which peaked at about 2.6 million years ago.
According to calculations of scientists, the supernova erupted in the distance 164 light-years. Blown out streams of cosmic particles and radiation could spread far into the Earth’s atmosphere, causing ionization. The researchers suggest that the content of ions in the air could rise 50 times. This process should lead to an increase in the number of detached atoms, free electrons, which in turn leads to the accumulation of charges and their discharge in the form of lightning. It is this chain of events could lead to the spread of forest fires and eventually to the emergence of bipedal primates — the ancestors of modern humans.
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Confirm or refute the hypothesis of scientists will help further research.