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Author Topic: RADIOMETRIC DATING?  (Read 9580 times)

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Offline mark

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RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« on: June 06, 2009, 11:33:17 AM »

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accurate?             Are there examples of inaccurate results obtained from the potassium/argon dating method (the most cited method)?             How can the radiometric dates of millions and billions of years old be so wrong?             Is there any evidence that radioactive decay rate might not have been constant?             What is the current creationist thinking on radiohalos (formerly called “pleochroic halos”)?      
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #1 on: June 06, 2009, 12:46:24 PM »
I guess some of us are just smart enough to see a rock.. or a petrified forest and realize how long something like that takes to form in nature...

Sorry, but your wasting your time.  You're young Earth theory is just straight out ridiculous.

Offline shadylane

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #2 on: June 06, 2009, 06:10:26 PM »
Desperation can lead one down strange paths.
"The problem with America is stupidity. I'm not saying there should be a capital punishment for stupidity, but why don't we just take the safety labels off of everything and let the problem solve itself?"

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #3 on: June 07, 2009, 10:13:14 PM »
I guess some of us are just smart enough to see a rock.. or a petrified forest and realize how long something like that takes to form in nature...

Sorry, but your wasting your time.  You're young Earth theory is just straight out ridiculous.
Your correct when you say your NOT smart enough. There have been many items made recently that have been found petrified.
The Mesozoic Era is one of the major divisions of geological history, following the Paleozoic era and preceding the Cenozoic era. The Mesozoic era, which lasted from approximately 240 million to 65 million years ago, may be characterized as the Age of Reptiles because their greatest development occurred during this era. The first birds and mammals and the first flowering plants also appeared at this time. The Mesozoic era is divided into three time periods: the Triassic, Jurassic, and Cretaceous.

As we move back into time we enter a period in the Mesozoic Era that began with the first dinosaurs appearing on the earth and ending with the development of flowering plants.  Humans wouldn't evolve for at least another 136 million years.  Yet the scientific finds below suggest proof that advanced civilizations were visiting Earth's past and walking at a time when dinosaurs roamed the planet.

Cretaceous Period

Metallic Tube at Saint-Jean de Livet, France over 65 million years old.

iron tube.jpg (15818 bytes)Y. Druet and H. Salfati announced in 1968 the discovery of semi-ovoid metallic tubes of identical shape but varying size in Cretaceous chalk.  The chalk bed, exposed in a quarry at Saint-Jean de Livet, France, is estimated to be least 65 million years old.   Having considered and eliminated several hypotheses, Druet and Salfati concluded that intelligent beings had lived 65 million years ago.  Who brought and left behind these metallic tubes in France more than 65 million years before the first human being would appear?

 

Triassic Period

Shoe Sole from Nevada, dated at 213 - 248 million years ago.

shoe3.jpg (18474 bytes)On October 8, 1922, the American Weekly section of the New York Sunday American ran a prominent feature titled "Mystery of the Petrified 'Shoe Sole,' by Dr. W. H. Ballou.   Ballou wrote: "Some time ago, while he was prospecting for fossils in Nevada, John T. Reid, a distinguished mining engineer and geologist, stopped suddenly and looked down in utter bewilderment and amazement at a rock near his feet.  For there, a part of the rock itself, was what seemed to be a human footprint!  Closer inspection showed that it was not a mark of a naked foot, but was, apparently, a shoe sole which had been turned into stone.  The forepart was missing.  But there was the outline of at least two-thirds of it, and around this outline ran a well-defined sewn thread which had, it appeared, attached the welt to the sole.  Further on was another line of sewing, and in the center, where the foot would have rested had the object really been a shoe sole, there was an indentation, exactly such as would have been made by the bone of the heel rubbing upon and wearing down the material of which the sole had been made.   Reid got hold of a microphotographer and an analytical chemist of the Rockefeller Institute, who made photos and analyses of the specimen.  The analyses removed any doubt of the shoe sole having been subjected to Triassic fossilization.... The microphoto magnifications are twenty times larger than the specimen itself, showing the minutest detail of thread twist and warp, proving conclusively that the shoe sole is not a resemblance, but is strictly the handiwork of man.  Even to the naked eye the threads can be seen distinctly, along with the definitely symmetrical outlines of the shoe sole.   Inside this rim and running parallel to it is a line which appears to be regularly perforated as if for stitches.  The Triassic rock bearing the fossil shoe sole is now recognized as being dated at 213 - 248 million years old.  An obviously modern shoe, complete with stitching, and etched in time in ancient Triassic rock.   What modern visitor was walking in our distant past more than 210 million years ago before the age of the dinosaurs?
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #4 on: June 07, 2009, 10:29:01 PM »
Petrified waterwheel

First published:
Creation 16(2):25
March 1994

Tourists who visit Cape Leeuwin in Western Australia are astonished at the sight of this waterwheel which has become entombed in solid rock in less than 65 years.

But why should it be surprising that the precipitation of minerals from flowing water can do this sort of thing in what is actually a fairly long period of time, with water dripping night and day?
small picture of waterwheel petrification

Close-ups of the waterwheel show remarkable concretions have formed in little more than 60 years. Natural formations whose ages are not know may lead some to believe they have taken thousands or even millions of years to form. Evolutionary indoctrination has left most people with a false idea of the what 'old' really is in the natural world.
close-up picture of waterwheel petrification

The reason most see these sorts of facts as extraordinary is because of our cultural conditioning in an evolutionary world view which is hostile to the Bible’s clear teaching of a recent creation. This makes people instinctively think of geological events such as petrifaction, fossilization and flowstone formation, for instance, in terms of many millions of years.

Given the right chemical environment, the thousands of years since Noah’s Flood are actually a vast amount of time adequate to explain the sorts of geological features we have grown up to believe speak of millions of years.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #5 on: June 07, 2009, 10:43:48 PM »
Tarawera’s night of terror

First published:
Creation 18(1):16–19
December 1995

by Renton Maclachlan

At 1:40 am, on the morning of 10 June 1886, a mountain a mere 29 kilometres (18 miles) from Rotorua in the North Island of New Zealand, blew its top. For around four hours, Mt Tarawera, as it is now known, spewed red hot rocks, mud, ash, and smoke over the countryside from fissures up to three kilometres wide and around 19 kilometres (12 miles) long.1 The immediate area around the mountain was devastated with an estimated 15,000 square kilometres (5,800 square miles) of countryside affected in some way.
The mission house

The mission house on the hill above Te Wairoa, following the eruption.

By 5:30 am the eruption was over, although ash continued to fall, and steam vented from the mountain for days. The death toll was 153, a relatively small number due to the low population of the area, but two whole Maori villages were wiped out.

Close by the mountain at its western end were two of the wonders of the world. The famous pink and white terraces descended the slopes alongside Lake Rotomahana in a series of brilliant white and pink steps.2 The white terraces were the larger, covering some three hectares (eight acres) and beginning in an enormous boiling cauldron 243 metres (about 800 feet) above lake level. The steps formed as a result of sinter3 dissolved in the water being deposited as the water made its way to the lake. When the sun shone on the vast area of silica-coated steps it sparkled like crystal. The colouration of the pink terraces went from pure white at the bottom through various shades of pink, which deepened towards the top. Then the colour mingled with a yellowish tinge until right at the top it became a delicate primrose. From all reports the terraces were a stunning sight. One observer said, ‘This is a revelation of beauty that strikes one dumb. I have seen all the world has to offer in glory and grandeur and this is supreme among them all’.4

The text of The Great Eruption of Tarawera, a tourist booklet, describes them this way: ‘In sunlight they glittered like a footstool of heaven itself as St John the Divine might have described it; flashing with varied hues of opal, its pools azure blue, and every terraced step hung with chalcedonic stalactites’.5
An old photogrpah before the destruction

An old photograph shows the white terraces as they appeared before their destruction in Tarawera’s volcanic firestorm.
From ‘The Buried Village’

A petrified bowler hat from The Buried Village.
From ‘The Buried Village’

The large pools formed behind the steps varied in temperature from boiling in the highest to cold in those near the lake. The lower ones were ideal for visitors to bathe in.

The eruption on that 10 June blew the pink and white terraces out of existence. New Zealand and the world lost two of their natural wonders.

Te Wairoa was a small settlement close to the mountain on its north-west side. It had a church, a school, and two hotels, all of which were destroyed. The Te Wairoa of 1886 is today ‘The Buried Village’. The remains of some of the buildings have been excavated, and artefacts entombed in the ash for 60 or so years are displayed in a small museum.

Some of these artefacts are fascinating, as the photos show. For example, there is a bowler hat which is now as hard as stone. Further, you could, if you had the stomach, tuck into a petrified sandwich or two. Along with a fossilized bag of flour for the bread, there’s a petrified ham for the filling. There are other items that look like sausages. Who could resist petrified sausages? However, for all their appearances, it seems they are not sausages at all, but perhaps some sort of medicine or fuel.6 All these artefacts were petrified as a result of being buried in the ash from the eruption.

Recently, as a result of inquiring after the whereabouts of this fossilized ham, I received a letter from the Physics Department of the University of Auckland. The writer said, among other things, ‘You may of course be using the term “fossil” in a loose sense but a ham could really in no way be a fossil—nor indeed could it be ‘petrified’ in so short a space of time. (True petrification takes time in the order of millions of years.) I do not know the state of the ham when discovered but there are a number of processes that I could imagine would harden it significantly and it was no doubt one of these that produced the item …’.7

I asked why the ham could not be a fossil, and was given the following definition from the Dictionary of Geological Terms, 1974, published for the American Geological Institute:

    ‘FOSSIL: 1. The remains or traces of animals or plants which have been preserved by natural causes in the Earth’s crust exclusive of organisms which have been buried since the beginning of historic time. 2. Anything dug from the Earth. (Obsolete)’.8

As the ham was petrified within ‘historic time’, it was excluded on the basis of the first of these definitions from being called a fossil. Furthering the amiable exchange, I objected to the definition, even though it came from a reputable dictionary.
From ‘The Buried Village’

A petrified bag of flour from The Buried Village.
Perhaps medicine or lampfuel

Sausage-like objects that are believed to be medicine or lampfuel.

First, fossilization occurs through a number of processes. How fast or when those processes occurred is irrelevant. The important thing is that a process has occurred. Second, the definition stacks the deck in favour of a particular view of history—the evolutionary view, by including in the definition an evolutionary concept. Since creationists say there is no such thing as ‘prehistory’, only history (man has been here from the beginning), this definition works against their understanding of fossils. If a fossil was determined purely on the basis of a process having occurred, which is the creation position, then much of the evolutionary mystique attached to fossils would evaporate.

One consequence of focusing on the process is that we know it is incorrect to say petrification takes millions of years. This ham, flour, and hat have not even taken 110 years to fossilize. They would have been transformed into their petrified state in perhaps days or weeks, or at the outside, a few years. The absolute maximum is 60 years—the length of time they were buried.

Actually, some of the Maori folk who lived in the area made pocket money as a result of the tourist trade developing around the pink and white terraces. They placed various items, such as hats, into the water at the terraces so as to petrify them.* Once petrified, they were sold as souvenirs.

And then there was the tourist graffiti. Hundreds of names, dates, addresses and poems, even the name of Sir George Gray, an early Governor of New Zealand, were scribbled on the silica to be covered in short measure by a transparent film and so be indelibly there for all to see!9 Fossilized graffiti!

How about lunch papers and tins and bottles the tourists left behind? A sheet of newspaper left on the white terraces was within days encased in silica. Fossilized news or garbage depending on how you view last week’s paper!

Of course things fell into the waters of their own accord. One scientific visitor to the terraces in 1868 found ‘many insects, such as beetles and dragon-flies, as well as some feathers of a lark, and the whole body of a hawk’ encrusted in the sinter.10

Mt Tarawera is yet another testimony to the rapidity with which fossilization can occur, and that the evolutionary concept of fossils as being ‘prehistoric’ does not conform with the evidence.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline mark

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We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #7 on: June 07, 2009, 11:09:16 PM »

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #8 on: June 08, 2009, 12:05:19 AM »
 How many times do you have to be proven wrong before you give up? I've been doing it consistently now for two years!
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #9 on: June 08, 2009, 01:01:46 AM »
Only in your mind.

Keep the dream alive Mark.

I'm sure someday you'll find what your REALLY looking for.

How many times do you have to be proven wrong before you give up? I've been doing it consistently now for two years!

Offline shadylane

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #10 on: June 08, 2009, 01:38:51 AM »
How many times do you have to be proven wrong before you give up? I've been doing it consistently now for two years!

Yes, you have consistently proven yourself wrong now for two years. Happy anniversary.
"The problem with America is stupidity. I'm not saying there should be a capital punishment for stupidity, but why don't we just take the safety labels off of everything and let the problem solve itself?"

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #11 on: June 09, 2009, 08:05:19 PM »
LOL

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #12 on: June 19, 2009, 01:51:51 AM »
Radiometric Dating: Back to Basics
by Andrew A. Snelling
June 17, 2009
Semi-technical
Keywords

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Radiometric dating is often used to “prove” rocks are millions of years old. Once you understand the basic science, however, you can see how wrong assumptions lead to incorrect dates.

Most people think that radioactive dating has proven the earth is billions of years old. After all, textbooks, media, and museums glibly present ages of millions of years as fact.

Yet few people know how radiometric dating works or bother to ask what assumptions drive the conclusions. So let’s take a closer look and see how reliable this dating method really is.
Atoms—Basics We Observe Today

Each chemical element, such as carbon and oxygen, consists of atoms. Each atom is thought to be made up of three basic parts.
Radiometric Dating 101

PART 1: Back to Basics
PART 2: Problems with the Assumptions
PART 3: Making Sense of the Patterns

This three-part series will help you properly understand radiometric dating, the assumptions that lead to inaccurate dates, and the clues about what really happened in the past.

The nucleus contains protons (tiny particles each with a single positive electric charge) and neutrons (particles without any electric charge). Orbiting around the nucleus are electrons (tiny particles each with a single negative electric charge).

The atoms of each element may vary slightly in the numbers of neutrons within their nuclei. These variations are called isotopes of that element. While the number of neutrons varies, every atom of any element always has the same number of protons and electrons.

So, for example, every carbon atom contains six protons and six electrons, but the number of neutrons in each nucleus can be six, seven, or even eight. Therefore, carbon has three isotopes (variations), which are specified carbon-12, carbon-13, and carbon-14 (Figure 1).
Stable and Unstable Atoms
Radioactive Decay

Some isotopes are radioactive; that is, they are unstable because their nuclei are too large. To achieve stability, the atom must make adjustments, particularly in its nucleus. In some cases, the isotopes eject particles, primarily neutrons and protons. (These are the moving particles measured by Geiger counters and the like.) The end result is a stable atom, but of a different chemical element (not carbon) because the atom now has a different number of protons and electrons.

This process of changing one element (designated as the parent isotope) into another element (referred to as the daughter isotope) is called radioactive decay. The parent isotopes that decay are called radioisotopes.

    Radiometric dating is based on an observable fact of science: unstable atoms will break down over a measurable period of time.

Actually, it isn’t really a decay process in the normal sense of the word, like the decay of fruit. The daughter atoms are not lesser in quality than the parent atoms from which they were produced. Both are complete atoms in every sense of the word.

Geologists regularly use five parent isotopes to date rocks: uranium-238, uranium-235, potassium-40, rubidium-87, and samarium-147. These parent radioisotopes change into daughter lead-206, lead-207, argon-40, strontium-87, and neodymium-143 isotopes, respectively. Thus geologists refer to uranium-lead (two versions), potassium-argon, rubidium-strontium, or samarium-neodymium dates for rocks. Note that the carbon-14 (or radiocarbon) method is not used to date rocks because most rocks do not contain carbon.
Chemical Analysis of Rocks Today

Geologists can’t use just any old rock for dating. They must find rocks that have the isotopes listed above, even if these isotopes are present only in minute amounts. Most often, this is a rock body, or unit, that has formed from the cooling of molten rock material (called magma). Examples are granites (formed by cooling under the ground) and basalts (formed by cooling of lava at the earth’s surface).

The next step is to measure the amount of the parent and daughter isotopes in a sample of the rock unit. Specially equipped laboratories can do this with accuracy and precision. So, in general, few people quarrel with the resulting chemical analyses.

It is the interpretation of these chemical analyses that raises potential problems. To understand how geologists “read” the age of a rock from these chemical analyses, let’s use the analogy of an hourglass “clock” (Figure 2).
Wrong Assumptions, Wrong Dates

In an hourglass, grains of fine sand fall at a steady rate from the top bowl to the bottom. After one hour, all the sand has fallen into the bottom bowl. So, after only half an hour, half the sand should be in the top bowl, and the other half should be in the bottom bowl.

Suppose that a person did not observe when the hourglass was turned over. He walks into the room when half the sand is in the top bowl, and half the sand is in the bottom bowl. Most people would assume that the “clock” started half an hour earlier.

By way of analogy, the sand grains in the top bowl represent atoms of the parent radioisotope (uranium-238, potassium-40, etc.) (Figure 2). The falling sand represents radioactive decay, and the sand at the bottom represents the daughter isotope (lead-206, argon-40, etc).

When a geologist tests a rock sample, he assumes all the daughter atoms were produced by the decay of the parent since the rock formed. So if he knows the rate at which the parent decays, he can calculate how long it took for the daughter (measured in the rock today) to form.

But what if the assumptions are wrong? For example, what if radioactive material was added to the top bowl or if the decay rate has changed? Future articles will explore the assumptions that can lead to incorrect dates and how the Bible’s history helps us make better sense of the patterns of radioactive “dates” we find in the rocks today.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #13 on: June 20, 2009, 12:20:50 PM »
Keep living the dream Mark.

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #14 on: June 20, 2009, 04:54:39 PM »
I guess some of us are just smart enough to see a rock.. or a petrified forest and realize how long something like that takes to form in nature...

Sorry, but your wasting your time.  You're young Earth theory is just straight out ridiculous.
If you can read my posts, you would know it takes very little time. You talk like you really know how long it takes for something to petrify. (you don't) Wheres your proof?
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #15 on: June 21, 2009, 04:02:48 AM »
Where's yours?

If you can read my posts, you would know it takes very little time. You talk like you really know how long it takes for something to petrify. (you don't) Wheres your proof?

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #16 on: June 21, 2009, 12:55:54 PM »
Look up!
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline Digital Narcosis

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #17 on: June 21, 2009, 01:12:46 PM »
Try again.

I guess I could copy and paste something too... but it wouldn't make you believe it would it?

Look up!

Offline shadylane

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #18 on: June 22, 2009, 01:46:26 AM »
The process of Radiometric dating uses the decay of radioactive elements. It has nothing to do with mineral deposits on hams, bowler hats or other items.

"The problem with America is stupidity. I'm not saying there should be a capital punishment for stupidity, but why don't we just take the safety labels off of everything and let the problem solve itself?"

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #19 on: June 22, 2009, 01:51:01 AM »
OK, back to the subject!

Answers For Kids

First published:
Creation 24(3):34–37
June 2002

by Dan Lietha and Stacia Byers
Dating Methods

How many times have you heard something like, ‘This animal lived 50,000 years ago’, or ‘This person died 20,000 years ago’? Have you ever wondered how the scientists knew the age of the bone? After all, the scientists haven’t been around that long, have they?

There are a variety of different ways to figure out how old an object is.

Of course, the best method is to check the account of a reliable eyewitness, if one is available. The Bible is such a record. Since it is the written Word of God, we can trust it to tell us the truth about the past. Carefully studying the Biblical record, we find that the universe has an age of around 6,000 years, and that a world-changing, global Flood occurred about 4,300 years ago.

Those who don’t accept the Biblical account of history look for other ways to discover the age of things. One of these methods is based on a substance found in our bodies, plants and all living things—it’s called carbon.
How Carbon Dating Works
How carbon dating works
Click above for full size illustration of the carbon cycle

There are two basic forms of carbon: one that occurs naturally, called carbon-12 (12C), and one that forms from processes acting on nitrogen in the atmosphere, called carbon-14 (14C). Both of these combine with oxygen to form carbon dioxide (CO2), which we breathe out and plants take in. When a cow eats grass, its body absorbs the carbon (both 12C and 14C) in the plant.

Bones
When the cow dies, it stops taking in carbon (for obvious reasons). The amount of 12C in the cow’s body stays the same after death, but the amount of 14C changes because it returns to nitrogen.

As time goes on, the amount of 14C continues to decrease until nothing is left, which is supposedly about 50,000 years later.

When a paleontologist finds a bone (or a piece of wood), she can measure the amount of 14C and 12C it contains. Based on how much 14C is left, she can supposedly calculate when the animal (or plant) died.

Sounds like a good idea, doesn’t it? But there’s a problem.
The problems is …

There are many factors that affect how much 14C an animal (or a person or plant) has in it when it dies. This changes how long ago the animal appears to have died.

For instance, plants don’t take in as much 14C as scientists expect. So, after they die, there is less 14C in the plants to change back to nitrogen. This makes the plant appear to have died many more years ago than it actually did (for example, the plant might appear to be, say, 3,000 years old, rather than 2,000).
Confused scientist

Also, the amounts of 14C and 12C in the atmosphere haven’t been constant throughout history (for instance, Noah’s Flood lowered the total amount of available carbon by burying lots of animals and plants). So something that lived (and died) when the proportion of 14C was less than normal would appear to have died more years ago than it actually did (for example, it might give an age of 3,000 years before the present, rather than its true age of 2,000 years).

Even many archaeologists don’t think ‘carbon dating’ is completely accurate all the time.

When these (and other) problems are then taken into account, a scientist can interpret the result of the carbon dating within a Biblical timeframe, but even so, these results can not be used to prove the age of once-living things.
How to find a ‘date’

Most people think that scientists can actually measure the ages of rocks, using a method called ‘radiometric’ or ‘radioisotope’ dating. More often, rocks are ‘dated’ by the fossils they contain, based on a pre-existing belief in evolution. But even radiometric dating does not actually directly measure the age of something (there is no substance called ‘age’). It measures the amounts of certain radioactive substances. This information then has to be interpreted, based on certain beliefs.

In fact, most fossils do not even contain radioactive minerals. So if scientists wanted to measure the age of a fossil using this method, they would look for a nearby layer of igneous rock (e.g. rock that forms from lava from a volcanic eruption)—perhaps in the rock layers above where the fossil was found, or in the layers below. When they find one, they gather a sample of the hardened lava and send it off to a laboratory to test it for radioactive elements.
The idea behind radiometric dating goes like this (hang on—this gets a bit technical, but we’re sure you’ll get it!):

When a volcano erupts, hot, molten rock (called ‘lava’) from deep inside the Earth is released. This lava is made of various elements. Elements are the ‘building-blocks’ of the universe (for example, water is made from the elements hydrogen and oxygen).

Some elements (we’ll call them ‘A’) in the lava are radioactive, which means that they change into other elements (we’ll call these ‘B’).
Element A    Element B

This is often very slow, so that it would take millions (for some elements, billions) of years, starting with a lump of A, for half of it to change into B (the ‘half life’).
Changing elements

However, even if we measured how much of A and B were in a sample of rock, could we figure out how long A has been changing into B, and therefore how old the rock is? No! We don’t know what the rock was like when it formed, or what has happened to it since. We weren’t there.
Really old rock
this rock seems REALLY, REALLY OLD!

But is it a good date?

The scientists who interpret these amounts of A and B to conclude that millions of years have passed must first assume three main things about the rock:

   1.

      How much A and B was in the rock when it hardened.
   2.

      A has decayed into B at the same rate over the years.
   3.

      The amount of A or B in the rock has not increased or decreased in any other way.

But because we haven’t been able to study all the rocks everywhere all the time, it’s impossible for us to know:

   1.

      If B was in the rock before it hardened.
   2.

      If A has always decayed at the same rate.
   3.

      If water, for instance, has removed some A, or carried some B into the rock from elsewhere.

All of these factors will affect how ‘old’ the rock appears—in practice, usually making it appear a lot older than it really is.

To test this method, some scientists gathered samples from hardened lava at Mount St Helens, which erupted most recently in the early 1980s. The samples, which came from rocks that formed between 1980 and 1986, were sent to a lab and were ‘dated’ using the potassium-argon (K-Ar) method. The test results ranged from between 340,000 to 2.8 million years old!

Other scientists collected samples from cooled lava flows from Mt Ngauruhoe, in New Zealand. These rocks are known to be less than 50 years old, because people observed the volcano erupting in 1949, 1954 and 1975. But the lab results indicated that the rocks were up to 3.5 million years old!
Known age    Unknown age

If this method doesn’t work on rocks the ages of which we know, how can we trust it to work on rocks of unknown age?

After examining the assumptions behind this ‘dating method’, and doing scientific experiments to see if this method works on rocks of an already known age, we find that ‘radiometric dating’ isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. (Actually, any process used to find ages for things is based on assumptions, and so is not reliable.)

It’s important that we allow God’s written record of history, the Bible, to guide our thinking about the past—this includes our understanding of the age of the Earth/universe and the age of fossils.

Help keep these daily articles coming. Find out how to support AiG.
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin

Offline What_The?

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #20 on: June 22, 2009, 02:21:15 AM »
You guys really love beating your heads against the same wall every day, huh?
"There are plenty of good reasons for fighting, but no good reason ever to hate without reservation, to imagine that God almighty Himself hates with you, too. Where's evil? It's that large part of every man that wants to hate without limit, that wants to hate with God on its side." - Kurt Vonnegut

Offline mark

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Re: RADIOMETRIC DATING?
« Reply #21 on: June 22, 2009, 10:58:06 AM »
 In a nut shell, One must make many assumptions to use carbon dating. Something as simple as an increase in the earths magnetic field in the past could completely throw off the numbers. Its not accurate! or scientific!
We are not human beings having a spiritual experience.
We are spiritual beings having a human experience.
~Teilhard de Chardin