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Three Kansas University researchers are set to appear on a Weather Channel TV show next week to talk about the possible damage to Earth caused by bursts of radiation coming from outer space.
The faculty members will appear on the second-ever episode of the series “Forecasting the End” at 8:30 p.m. Thursday on the Weather Channel, KU announced Friday.
Included will be Bruce Lieberman, professor of ecology and evolutionary biology; Adrian Melott, professor of physics and astronomy; and Brian Thomas who is an adjunct associate professor at KU as well as an associate professor of physics and astronomy at Washburn University.
On the show, which focuses on natural disasters that occur rarely on Earth but have the potential to cause mass extinctions, the three will discuss gamma-ray bursts. Those are bursts of radiation that typically occur along with the death of a star, and the three professors have collaborated on research on how the bursts might damage Earth — and, according to them, already have.
They’ve advanced the theory that a gamma-ray burst already caused a mass extinction of many species on Earth 445 million years ago.