In a new video by Atlas Pro on Hawaii linked below, he indicates a curious observation: Most hotspots antipode’s have sign’s of heavy impacts from asteroids.

He postulated that the force of these impacts could force magma in the earth towards the opposite side of the globe, like a magma plume but in reverse.

Fundamentally, this is just a casual relationship for now, but Wegener’s ideas on plate tectonics were linked to the “jigsaw” of S.America and Africa, so this is not totally unseen in Geophysics.

Hence, this leads me to ask: Has there been any serious research or papers in this idea?

Link to video : Biogeography of Hawaii Explained

  • $\begingroup$ As noted in several comments on the video you linked to, 65-million-year-old Hawaii is roughly at the opposite side of the earth from those impact craters today -- but due to continental drift, those locations in Africa would not have been at the time of those impacts, 135 million or 2 billion years ago. $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 30, 2022 at 18:12
  • $\begingroup$ Yes, there are some papers about a possible link between asteroid impacts and antipodal volcanism, on Earth or on Mars, I mentioned two of such studies in this answer: earthscience.stackexchange.com/a/23063/18081 $\endgroup$ Commented Mar 30, 2022 at 19:35

1 Answer 1


This question has been researched for decades. Here are two examples of such studies (you can find more by looking at articles citing those two).

antipodal pressures from the Hellas impact probably produced sufficient focused energy at its antipode to produce deep fractures (on the order of tens of kilometers) in the Martian crust centered below the current caldera for Alba Patera, and may account for aspects of volcanism at Alba.

displacement and strain amplitudes at the surface of the Earth near the antipode of a large impact are an order of magnitude larger than those over most of the rest of the Earth’s surface and that the seismic energy remains sharply focused down to the core-mantle boundary. These simulations provide the proof-of-principle basis supporting the hypothesis that large impacts on Earth can generate effects deep in the mantle that might lead to observable consequences.

Note that asteroids impacts have not been associated to antipodal volcanism only. They can also trigger "plume-like", decompression melting at the impact site. In Impact induced melting and the development of large igneous provinces, Jones et al. (2002) made the hypothesis that the Siberian Traps could be the result of a large impact. Volcanism triggered by such impacts would fill the craters, explaining their absence on Earth.

Yet another study, Extraterrestrial influences on mantle plume activity (Abbott & Isley 2002), postulates that large impacts strengthen existing plumes (not necessarily at the antipodal point). This is illustrated by the fact that the Deccan traps, which were already active before the Chixculub impact, had their most voluminous phase of volcanism immediately after the impact.


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