Indian scientists have come to the conclusion that the circular structure of Luna with a diameter of 1.8 km in western India could have been left by the largest meteorite in the last 50 thousand years. writes about this with reference to the study published in the journal Planetary and Space Science.

Scientists have long suspected that the Luna structure (named after the small settlement of Luna nearby) could be a meteorite crater. A new study of the soil near the crater has reinforced the theory of the meteorite origin of the structure, revealing large amounts of iron. In addition, minerals such as wussite, irshsteinite, herzynite, and ulvospinel were found in the soil, which are signs of meteoric origin. To finally confirm the theory, it is necessary to find the remnants of rocks melted by the meteorite impact. The relevant areas of the crater are underwater, but scientists plan to reach them in future studies.

Studies refined by optically stimulated luminescence have indicated an age of approximately 4,050 years for the crater. The crater’s diameter of 1.8 km gives a rough idea of the weight and energy of the impact, which must have caused a powerful shock wave and large forest fires in the Indus Valley. Around 1900 BCE, i.e., almost at the time of the Luna meteorite impact, was the end of the mature phase of the Harappan or Indus civilization.

At the time, it was a powerful civilization on par with Egyptian and Mesopotamian, with its own writing, art, and science. Today, at least 1000 Harappan settlements are known to exist. One of the largest settlements, Dholavira, is located just outside the Luna structure. In 1900 BC, the Harappan civilization began a rapid decline. By 1700 BC, almost all cities had been abandoned. Therefore, the impact of a powerful meteorite impact on these events cannot be ruled out.

As a reminder, we have an extensive article dedicated to meteorites and meteor craters on Earth.