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Creationist arguments against radiometric dating problems, radiometric Dating and Creation Science

The radiometric decay rates used in dating are totally reliable. They have their work cut out for them, however, because radiocarbon C dating is one of the most reliable of all the radiometric dating methods. In the case of carbon dating, the daughter product is ordinary nitrogen and plays no role in the dating process.

Because of background radiation, that's about as far as one can normally go with this counting method. Lab contamination and technique can be checked by running blanks. Therefore, so is its decay curve. The decay curve is mathematically determined by the fact that every atom of carbon in a sample has the same chance of decaying during each second of time.

The random character of radioactive decay is a special case of the indeterminacy of quantum theory, as was pointed out in by George Gamow, Ronald Gurney and Edward Condon. When lava at the ridges hardens, it keeps a trace of the magnetism of the earth's magnetic field. At that point it's just a routine exercise in math. What is a forest, including developed soil and rooted stumps, doing between two advances of ice?

Cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere are constantly converting the isotope nitrogen N into carbon C or radiocarbon. Wouldn't that spoil the tree-ring count? Indeed, it would be absurd to speak of the half-life of a radioactive isotope if it did not have a good exponential decay curve! If structural carbon migrated easily there soon wouldn't be any cellulose, lignin, chitin or other structural carbon compounds left in the soil! This would mean that eighty-two hundred years worth of tree rings had to form in five thousand years, which would mean that one-third of all the bristlecone pine rings would have to be extra rings.

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Being that this was one of the biggest volcanic eruptions in recorded history, it almost certainly caused worldwide cooling which would, in turn, affect tree growth. The C decay rate is not constant. Other species of trees corroborate the work that Ferguson did with bristlecone pines. Yes, Cook is right that C is forming today faster than it's decaying. Further study might even allow correction tables.

Today, the half-lives of those radioactive elements used in dating are known to a few percent by careful laboratory study. Hovind knows next to nothing about carbon dating!

Aren't these just excuses scientists give in order to neutralize Barnes's claims? Once we have a good approximation of the half-life for carbon, its decay curve can be constructed with complete confidence. See Renfrew for more details. Kieth and Anderson show considerable evidence that the mussels acquired much of their carbon from the limestone of the waters they lived in and from some very old humus as well.

If you get your information from a creationist source, you'd better triple-check it! So, creationists who complain about double rings in their attempts to disprove C dating are actually grasping at straws. Creationists such as Cook claim that cosmic radiation is now forming C in the atmosphere about one and one-third times faster than it is decaying. Could it be that the whole scientific community has missed this point, or is it another case of creationist daydreaming? In another creationist, linx dating twitterpated Robert L.

That is, the equilibrium point should have long since been reached given the present rate of carbon production and the old age of the earth. However, as we have seen, it has survived their most ardent attacks. The interior portion of a tree trunk could easily be several hundred years older than the outer portions.

However, there are laboratory techniques, often ingenious, for dealing with such problems. What specifically does C dating show that creates problems for the creation model? So, if we measure the rate of beta decay in an organic sample, we can calculate how old the sample is. Some samples, such as a section of a tree trunk, may well contain material of considerably different ages. Jennifer Hillam of the University of Sheffield and Mike Baillie of Queen's University of Belfast and their colleagues were able to date the walkway by a second method, i.

They are one of the safest bets in all of science. We don't need Egyptian mummies or what have you at that point. Hovind has relied on bad data.

It has not been decaying exponentially as Barnes maintains. Even so, the missing rings are a far more serious problem than any double rings. Of course, some species of tree tend to produce two or more growth rings per year. The snug fit indicates that the half-life of C is stable and accurately known. To that end, he quoted some authorities, including Richard Lingenfelter.

But, in spite of Barnes, paleomagnetism on the sea floor conclusively proves that the magnetic field of the earth oscillates in waves and even reverses itself on occasion. The notable exception involves certain mollusks, which get much of their carbon from dissolved limestone. Insect burrows, cracks, and partial decay may allow contamination later on to affect those portions of the sample unequally. In summing up this point, we do know within good limits what the initial C was for any reasonable sample. Measurements of decay rates under differing gravitational and magnetic fields also have yielded negative results.

Dating various portions of a sample is another kind of check that may be performed. Not every mollusk shell presents such problems, and the dating of other material might yield a cross-check.

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Radiometric Dating and Creation Science

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Another attempt by Morris invokes neutrinos. If we extrapolate backwards in time with the proper equations, we find that the earlier the historical period, the less C the atmosphere had. But how does one know that the magnetic field has fluctuated and reversed polarity? The evidence for fluctuations and reversals of the magnetic field is quite solid.

However, Henry Morris, that icon of creationism, only demonstrated that he knew no more about radiometric dating than does Dr. If he is referring to the carbon decay curve then he has demonstrated, once again, his ignorance of radiometric dating. These changes are irrelevant to radiometric dating methods.

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The older an organism's remains are, the less beta radiation it emits because its C is steadily dwindling at a predictable rate. We stick the garden hose in and turn it on full blast. Finally, when the water reaches a certain level in the barrel, the amount of water going into the barrel is equal to the amount leaking out the perforated sides. One suspects that the scientific world would not be using the carbon method if it were so obviously flawed. Therefore, any C dates taken from objects of that time period would be too high.

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