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Scientists release most precise date of dinosaur extinction

An international team of scientists has come up with the most precise date yet for the extinction of the dinosaurs, BBC News reported. Their radiometric dating analysis of rock and ash samples indicates that the dinosaurs died out 66,038,000 years ago, plus or minus 11,000 years.

The findings of the researchers, from the Berkeley Geochronology Center and the University of California at Berkeley in the US, Glasgow University in the UK and Vrije University Amsterdam in the Netherlands, appear in the Feb. 8 issue of the journal Science.

The new extinction date supports the theory that the Cretaceous-Tertiary extinction event, which killed off all dinosaurs except the birds, was caused by an asteroid or comet slamming into what is now Mexico, BBC News reported. The revised date is no more than 33,000 years after an asteroid collision created a 110-mile-wide crater near the Mexican town of Chicxulub.

According to LiveScience:

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