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Author Topic:   Assessing the Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth (RATE) Project
Member (Idle past 2169 days)
Posts: 119
Joined: 06-02-2010

Message 13 of 36 (563769)
06-06-2010 7:24 PM

Sorry for the delayed reply.

Your post is nothing but PRATTS (points refuted a thousand times).

Humor me....I haven't reviewed this in depth before.

I reviewed your links as well as a few other papers/articles on this subject. I don't claim to have a full grasp on the entirety of the RATE project, its results, or criticisms.

I agree that the RATE project demonstrates a long period of radioactive decay based upon the modern (assumed) constant - and debunks the creationist hypothesis (of the time) that such decay did not exist. I also agree that the RATE conclusion of accelerated decay comes with a lot of unanswered questions.

The RATE project though does provide SOME evidence for a young-earth. The piece I am the most familiar with is the helium diffusion in zircon prediction - this was a blind study that resulted in an accurate prediction matching a 6,000 year old earth with accelerated decay at or near the beginning of that timespan. Here's a link to a more recent article Dr. Humphreys discussing/rebutting some of the criticisms of this experiment. The biggest detractor to this experiment seems to be Dr. Gary H. Loechelt, whose most recent critical review of this experiment (that I could find) is here. Reading through Dr. Loechelt's response it appears he validly shows how the RATE experiment results could be off - but the percentage is miniscule. From my understanding we're talking 30% of the surface helium (which is 1-2%) remaining - so the results may be off by less than 1/2 a percent - well within tolerable error limits, and nowhere near the hundred thousand orders of magnitude required for the data to fit an old-earth model. I admit I'm not following the second half of his article very well - so perhaps I'm missing something.

I don't think it is accurate to characterize the RATE project as a failure - any more than it's accurate for creationists to claim it to be a total success. It provided certain valuable data - destroying certain creationist hypotheses, but paving the way for others.

Is the RATE project's conclusion of accelerated decay a reasonable one? Given the YEC model I would say yes, hesitantly. I would suggest that it is important for creationists to devise some tests, make some more predictions, and gather evidence for this accelerated decay hypothesis in the near future, because it is probably one of the riskier hypotheses in creation science. I have not yet (but hope to) do some poking around to find out what creationist work is currently being done on this subject. If I find information of interest I'll be sure to post it here.

Replies to this message:
 Message 14 by JonF, posted 06-06-2010 8:32 PM BobTHJ has responded
 Message 18 by Taq, posted 06-09-2010 3:19 PM BobTHJ has not yet responded

Member (Idle past 2169 days)
Posts: 119
Joined: 06-02-2010

Message 16 of 36 (564192)
06-08-2010 9:44 PM
Reply to: Message 14 by JonF
06-06-2010 8:32 PM

I have to admit I'm in over my head here. I didn't fully follow the second half of Dr. Loecholt's paper - and while I likely could muddle through it given enough time I've got too many other things going at the moment.

I will review the links you posted, as well as any other material I can find on this issue and get back with you at some point in the future when I have a better grasp of the science involved.

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 Message 14 by JonF, posted 06-06-2010 8:32 PM JonF has not yet responded

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 Message 17 by Coyote, posted 06-08-2010 9:48 PM BobTHJ has responded

Member (Idle past 2169 days)
Posts: 119
Joined: 06-02-2010

Message 19 of 36 (564825)
06-13-2010 2:16 AM
Reply to: Message 17 by Coyote
06-08-2010 9:48 PM

Re: RATE Project overview
And did the comments we have posted or linked make any change in your position?

Your comments and links have forced me to seriously consider the implications of the RATE project as follows:

1) The validity of the RATE research - was the data gathered in a scientific manner?

2) How does the YEC justify an accelerated decay and the corresponding side effects of such a hypothesis? There need to be some solid answers if this is to be a viable theory.

My plan is to investigate the answers to both these questions as well as gather further information on the topic of radio-isotope decay. You have not swayed me to your thinking - but you have called my position into question. If I am unable to find evidence refuting what you have posted then I'll have to concede the point.

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Replies to this message:
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