Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #tallelhammam

Most recents (11)

Late-breaking bonus thread about the @SciReports paper on #Sodom & Gomorrah! This hypothesis was featured in a documentary by the History Channel and I've found it online. It includes an animation of Lot's wife turning into a pillar of salt! Here she is before the impact.
Here's Lot's wife at the moment of impact. This is based on the just-published #BiblicalArchaeology paper by Bunch et al (2021) on #TallElHammam.
And here's Lot's wife as a post-impact pillar of salt. How can anyone dispute the #TEHburst paper now? It's based on peer-reviewed research published in a journal that's overseen by @Nature!
Read 4 tweets
My threads on Sodom airburst paper in Nature's
@scireports have led to feedback & to new Twitter friends. Thanks for your comments! For those who arrived after my first post on Monday, here’s a link to the beginning. #TallElHammam #TEHburst #YDBS
@SciReports The vast majority of comments by archeologists, physicists, geologists, astronomers, & impact experts have been positive. I'm hoping to hear from coauthors of the #TEHburst paper. Maybe none are on twitter or don’t feel the need to answer q's from scientists about their paper.
Several coauthors of the #TEHburst paper list their affiliation as “Comet Research Group”. Check out their website. Of the 21 #TEHburst coauthors, 16 are members of the Comet Research Group.…
Read 17 tweets
I now turn my attention to the Younger Dryas Boundary Strike #YDBS hypothesis. It’s been called the Younger Dryas Impact Hypothesis #YDIH by many, but that’s a misnomer because Team Comet has never been able to decide if was an impact or an airburst. #TEHburst Image
The #YDBS is relevant to the #TEHburst hypothesis because it was conceived and is led by the same team of researchers using the same methods and making the same mistakes. The best segue from my last thread is to discuss a paper by my friend, Gunther Kletetschka.
#YDBS posits that the N American megabeasts of the last ice were abruptly wiped out by an asteroid, comet, swarm of asteroids, or swarm of comets (impacts or airbursts) about 12,800 years ago. It also put an end to the Clovis Culture. It has been thoroughly & repeatedly debunked.
Read 18 tweets
As I continue my quest to find the paper “Kletetschka, G., Radana, K. & Hakan, U. Evidence of shock-generated plasma’s demagnetization in the shock-exposed rocks. Sci. Rep. (2021)” that was cited by #TEHbust, the #TallElHammam #BiblicalArchaeology paper, I'll discuss #Tunguska. Image
The Sodom & Gomorrah airburst team cited this in support of their claim that a Tunguska-like airburst can generate shocked quartz, even though—according to experts on shocked quartz—none has ever been found that is associated with #Tunguska. Shocked quartz looks like this. Image
I met the lead author, Gunther Kletetschka, in Russia in 2008 and we enjoyed time together doing field work in the destruction zone of the 1908 #Tunguska airburst. It was for a Discovery Channel documentary shoot on June 30, 2008: the 100th anniversary of #AsteroidDay Image
Read 36 tweets
My next thread will be about my field experience at Tunguska. Three of us (Gunther Kletetschka, Jason Morgan, and me) were all there for a Discovery Channel documentary shoot. We all had different ideas about the cause of the Tunguska Phenomenon, as the Russians call it. Image
But first I want to say more about Gunther’s role in the #TallElHammam paper in @SciReports (#TEHburst). He is one of 7 coauthors who, according to the author contributions note, performed fieldwork. In my opinion, he was the only one of the 7 who was qualified for that job.
The paper also cited Gunther's other work. Most notably to me was a statement, page 27, in the context of shocked quartz. It claims that Gunther was able to explain how an airburst can generate the shock lamellae, which are among the diagnostic signatures of shocked quartz. Image
Read 14 tweets
The title of the paper I’m critiquing is "A Tunguska sized airburst destroyed Tall el-Hammam a Middle Bronze Age city in the Jordan Valley near the Dead Sea." I’m tagging it #TEHburst to help keep track of these threads. To understand the paper, we need talk about #Tunguska.
At this juncture I would like to invite any of my colleagues who are experts in any of the fields I’m talking about to jump in with comments. If I make more mistakes, get something wrong, or forget a detail that you know, please correct me.
I attended the "100 years of the Tunguska phenomenon: past, present, future” conference in Moscow on June, 2008. I learned a lot of science, but I also learned a lot of backstory about the history of the “Tunguska phenomenon,” which is what the Russians call it.
Read 20 tweets
These are just some preliminary observations on #TalElHammam and #TEHburst, But I thought they were worth mentioning. As a geoarchaeologist working (amongst other things) on a palatial destruction, I have some thoughts.
I primarily study #micromorphology, I look at dirt under a microscope to understand how it ended up where I found it. This could be anything from agricultural soil to ta clay floor. I often try to figure out how sediment is transported or altered.…
Simply put, it doesn’t seem to me that the sediments at #TallElHammam match up with the interpretation by Bunch et al. At all.
Read 16 tweets
As I promised yesterday, I’m going to start addressing the specific scientific claims of the #BiblicalArchaeology paper on #TallElHammam, just published in Scientific Reports @SciReports which I will tag #TEHburst from now on. (Art credit: Don Davis) Image
There are supposedly 17 lines of evidence. Given that I have a day job, I’d be lucky to finish by mid-October even if I debunked one every day. But this is as much about entertainment as it is about enlightenment so I expect some diversions & do-loops.
I think it’s the backstory that will keep everyone engaged & entertained. So I will also alternate with human interest stories & fun threads with history & anecdotes. I’ll try to continue until I finish or everyone loses interest, whichever comes first.
Read 41 tweets
V. interested to see the critique of #TallElHammam results from the perspective of a planetary scientist. I have analyzed lots of what I lovingly term "melted crap" from Near Eastern sites, and my first impression was that I'd seen a lot of this kind of thing elsewhere THREAD 1/
Here's a random selection of photos of material from one site, Mtsvane Gora, in Georgia (the country). Potsherds melted on one side, chunks of vitrified vesicular material, etc. Not shown: the obviously metallurgical slags found alongside this material. 2/ ImageImageImageImage
And here are some SEM images of various bits of vitrified material from my site--very similar to what is described as meltglass in the paper. 3/ ImageImageImageImage
Read 12 tweets
<sarcasm>I'm not normally one to wade into a controversial topic</sarcasm> but having just read the recent #TallElHammam / biblical Sodom paper in Nature: Sci. Rep., I see one serious flaw in how they use their 14C dates. A thread (1/10):
2/10 The authors state "The age of the destruction layer at TeH was modeled using the OxCal radiocarbon calibration program...with the ‘Combine’ computer routine". If you don't understand, cool. Apparently the reviewers didn't either. Let explain it:
3/10 They used an OxCal command to assume from the outset that all the "combined" dates are from the same event. This is NOT a model, rather, it is a specific command to OxCal to take many age estimates of a single event, and calculate a single age of that event.
Read 11 tweets
Yesterday I posted a “hot take” on a new #BiblicalAchaeology paper claiming that #TallElHammam in the Jordan Valley is Biblical Sodom & was wiped out when a small comet or asteroid exploded over the city. This thread is to provide more background before I critique the content.
First, a correction. I said it was in Nature. It was in Scientific Reports. I learned about it from a colleague who wrote,“I suspect you've seen the recent Nature paper about the airburst in the Jordan Valley. I wonder if we could talk about it?” I failed due diligence.
On Feb 15, 2013, an asteroid blew up over the city of Chelyabinsk, Russia. Since I’d published models of airbursts and had identified them as the most significant asteroid threat, I was invited to travel to Russia for the Nova documentary “Meteor Strike”.
Read 30 tweets

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