On a fateful day around 66 million years ago, a 7.5 mile wide (12 kilometer) space rock crashed into Earth, setting off a series of events that ended the age of the dinosaurs . From a dinosaur perspective, it’s one of the unluckiest days of life on Earth, and a new special is piecing together what happened using newly discovered evidence.
“Dinosaur Apocalypse,” part of NOVA’s science series, airs in two parts starting May 11 on PBS. In the documentary, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, you’ll follow paleontologists as they unearth new fossils, then watch their discoveries unfold with dinosaurs rendered with computer generated images (CGI).
These scenes and the entire program center on discoveries made in a section of the Hell Creek Formation in North Dakota called Tanis, where researchers suspect they found a mass graveyard of killed animals shortly after the asteroid hit. “We are thrilled to take viewers on this journey as scientists excavate this extraordinary dig site,” NOVA co-executive producer Julia Cort said in a statement.
“We are able to look over the shoulders of paleontologists who are discovering some of the rarest fossils ever found in North America – possibly the world – which, if confirmed, could help shed light on the day. the most dramatic in the history of the planet,” Cort added.
Related: Darkness caused by dinosaur-killing asteroid extinguished life on Earth in 9 months
Filmed over three years, the special looks in detail at the work of Robert DePalma, a doctoral student at the University of Manchester in England, and his team. Viewers will see mind-blowing discoveries from a pterosaur embryo still in its egg and a piece of Triceratops skin, and more in the first part of the special, titled “Dinosaur Apocalypse: The New Evidence.”
In part two, “Dinosaur Apocalypse: The Last Day”, the team uncovers more evidence that the Tanis fossils represent victims of the extinction event that ended the Cretaceous period (about 145 million to 66 million years ago), wiping out about 80% of Earth’s animal life. Fossils include a dinosaur leg that appears to have been torn from a Thescelosaurus – a small, bipedal dinosaur – in the wake of the asteroid hitting what is now Mexico’s Yucatán Peninsula, where the impact left a deep scar known as the Chicxulub crater.
Striking new fossils paint a picture of life just before the asteroid impact. “Dinosaur Apocalypse: The New Evidence,” first hour of a two-hour special, premieres WED, MAY 11 at 9/8c on @PBS: https://t.co/aOHtsyvgKj pic.twitter.com/CDZjxRFReXApril 29, 2022
However, not all experts are convinced that the Thescelosaurus featured in the documentary died the day the fateful asteroid struck Earthor they withhold judgment until all results are published in peer-reviewed journals, Previously reported Live Science.
The documentary is co-produced by PBS and BBC Studios Science Unit. A version of this documentary titled “Dinosaurs: The Final Day with David Attenborough” aired on BBC One in the UK on April 15, 2022. However, the new two-part NOVA special includes additional experts commenting on the discoveries that do not did not appear. in the UK version.
“Dinosaur Apocalypse: The New Evidence” airs May 11 at 9 p.m. ET on PBS, immediately followed by “Dinosaur Apocalypse: The Last Day” at 10 p.m. ET. The episodes will also be available to stream online at pbs.org/nova and on the PBS video app.
Originally posted on Live Science.