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Author Topic:   Validity of Radiometric Dating
ssula 
Suspended Junior Member (Idle past 776 days)
Posts: 1
Joined: 06-04-2015


Message 136 of 196 (758839)
06-04-2015 1:10 AM


The idea of a false appearance of great age is a philosophical and theological matter that we won't go into here. The main drawback--and it is a strong one--is that this makes God appear to be a deceiver. However, some ... people have no problem with this. Certainly whole civilizations have been incorrect (deceived?) in their scientific and theological ideas in the past. Whatever the philosophical conclusions, it is important to note that an apparent old Earth is consistent with the great amount of scientific evidence. http://www.breaklink.siteshowinfo.com/sites/forum.ucweb.com

Edited by ssula, : No reason given.

Edited by ssula, : No reason given.

Edited by Admin, : Break link.


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mindspawn
Member (Idle past 215 days)
Posts: 1015
Joined: 10-22-2012


Message 137 of 196 (759791)
06-15-2015 8:52 AM
Reply to: Message 136 by ssula
06-04-2015 1:10 AM


Interested
Im interested in why you would say that "an apparent old Earth is consistent with the great amount of scientific evidence". What "great amount" are you referring to? I believe in an old earth, however I don't see all this evidence you refer to.

An old earth is consistent with the assumption of evolution (its an assumption)
Its consistent with the assumption of slow formation of rocks (rocks can form over hundreds of years, they do not need millions of years)
Its consistent with radiometric dating (which functions under the assumption of the constancy of decay- its a mere assumption already proven incorrect)

So there are a lot of assumptions there to make up a "great amount" of assumptions. The evidence however is a little lacking. Sure the earth is most likely old, but that's a relative term.


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Admin
Director
Posts: 12533
From: EvC Forum
Joined: 06-14-2002
Member Rating: 1.8


Message 138 of 196 (759792)
06-15-2015 8:56 AM
Reply to: Message 137 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 8:52 AM


Re: Interested
Hi Mindspawn,

Ssula is a link spammer who has been indefinitely suspended. The post you're responding to was his attempt to make his post seem like it was part of the discussion. I should have broken his link when I suspended him, must have forgotten, but I have done so now.


--Percy
EvC Forum Director

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JonF
Member
Posts: 3969
Joined: 06-23-2003
Member Rating: 2.3


(2)
Message 139 of 196 (759825)
06-15-2015 1:08 PM
Reply to: Message 137 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 8:52 AM


Re: Interested
Constancy of radioactive decay rates under terrestrial conditions is a conclusion, not an assumption. There are strong theoretical reasons to believe that, and thousands of experiments that demonstrate it. And the repercussions of any variation in decay rates would be extremely widespread, as physicist Steve Carlip pointed out in The Constancy of Constants and The Constancy of Constants, Part 2.

There has been no demonstration or theoretical prediction of any variation in radioactive decay rates significant enough to significantly decrease the mainstream age of the Earth. There were some demonstrations of significantly accelerated decay rates at temperatures that would have vaporized the Earth had it been that hot.

Consilience is another serious problem for claims of inconstant decay rates. Radioactive decay is an "umbrella term" for widely different processes. The isotopes used in radiometric dating decay by three very different processes, and there are subdivisions of these processes. But given the vast amount of consilient dates obtained by different methods using isotopes that decay in different ways, any process that changes decay rates would have to change all the varieties in exactly the same way, and nobody's ever come up with any hypothesis about how that could happen. We do have lots of experiments and theoretical analysis that shows it won't happen.

And, of course, if there was significant accelerated decay that brought the tens of thousands of consilient results into line with a YEC time frame, there would be subtle signs of it. Such as a melted Earth and all life killed twice over by heat and radiation. Perhaps with the exception of a few thermophilic bacteria. See Heat and radiation destroy claims of accelerated nuclear decay

Edited by JonF, : Fix last url


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kbertsche
Member
Posts: 1405
From: San Jose, CA, USA
Joined: 05-10-2007
Member Rating: 2.1


(2)
Message 140 of 196 (759844)
06-15-2015 2:34 PM
Reply to: Message 137 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 8:52 AM


Re: Interested

An old earth is consistent with the assumption of evolution (its an assumption)

But evidence for an old earth came long before Darwin and was accepted on its own merits, independently of evolution.

Its consistent with the assumption of slow formation of rocks (rocks can form over hundreds of years, they do not need millions of years)

Can you please explain?

Its consistent with radiometric dating (which functions under the assumption of the constancy of decay- its a mere assumption already proven incorrect)

So there are a lot of assumptions there to make up a "great amount" of assumptions. The evidence however is a little lacking. Sure the earth is most likely old, but that's a relative term.


1) we have good evidence that radioactive decay rates are constant. Consider the decay of Co-56 as seen in the light curve of SN1987A. This supernova is 168,000 light years from us. The decay that we observe was happening 168,000 years ago in the intense temperatures and pressures of a supernova, but its rate is the same as measured in laboratories on earth today.
2) for calibrated radiocarbon dates, the constancy of the C-14 decay rate is irrelevant. Even if the decay rate had changed, it would not affect calibrated radiocarbon dates.

"Science without religion is lame, religion without science is blind." Albert Einstein

I am very astonished that the scientific picture of the real world around me is very deficient. It gives us a lot of factual information, puts all of our experience in a magnificently consistent order, but it is ghastly silent about all and sundry that is really near to our heart, that really matters to us. It cannot tell us a word about red and blue, bitter and sweet, physical pain and physical delight; it knows nothing of beautiful and ugly, good or bad, God and eternity. Science sometimes pretends to answer questions in these domains, but the answers are very often so silly that we are not inclined to take them seriously. Erwin Schroedinger


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mindspawn
Member (Idle past 215 days)
Posts: 1015
Joined: 10-22-2012


Message 141 of 196 (759848)
06-15-2015 3:01 PM
Reply to: Message 139 by JonF
06-15-2015 1:08 PM


Re: Interested
I assume you are familiar with the recent Purdue University and Israel Geological Survey studies? Here are some links:

Decay is affected by the sun's core:
http://arxiv.org/abs/1205.0205

Decay is affected by solar flares:
http://www.khouse.org/enews_article/2013/2053/

Only short-life isotopes have been mentioned in those studies, the effects on the longer life isotopes, those used to measure earth's earliest rocks, are not discussed. But what can be seen is that there is a negative relationship between speed of decay and penetration of the earth's magnetic field. Slight changes to penetration (flares/seasons/suns core) cause slight changes to decay rates.

If slight changes to penetration of cosmic particles cause slight changes to decay rates, and proportionately, then its obvious that a complete blockout of the penetration of cosmic particles would have a dramatic effect on decay rates.

Due to the fact that the magnetic field was significantly stronger in the past, and cosmic particles that cause background radiation are highly vulnerable to changes in magnetic field penetration, its highly likely the historical effect of this phenomenon is highly significant to long-life decay rates.

Edited by mindspawn, : No reason given.


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Replies to this message:
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mindspawn
Member (Idle past 215 days)
Posts: 1015
Joined: 10-22-2012


Message 142 of 196 (759850)
06-15-2015 3:16 PM
Reply to: Message 140 by kbertsche
06-15-2015 2:34 PM


Re: Interested
Hi kbertsche,

Please put forward the actual evidence for an old earth that existed before Darwin.

All 3 types of rocks, sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic have been known to form rapidly

Please see my other posts for evidence that decay is not a constant.


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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9992
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.4


(2)
Message 143 of 196 (759854)
06-15-2015 3:40 PM
Reply to: Message 141 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 3:01 PM


Re: Interested
Due to the fact that the magnetic field was significantly stronger in the past, and cosmic particles that cause background radiation are highly vulnerable to changes in magnetic field penetration, its highly likely the historical effect of this phenomenon is highly significant to long-life decay rates.

There is no evidence that any of these things affect decay rates. Every attempt to link a real world cause (e.g. neutrinos, cosmic radiation) to the supposed affect on decay rates has been an absolute failure.

The patent application in the EU failed because the scientists and their lawyers were utterly unable to correlate the measured decay rates with solar flares or neutrinos or even to describe how someone else might do so.

The supposed science you are relying isn't nearly as steady as it was the last time you were here, and it was shaky even then.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


This message is a reply to:
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Replies to this message:
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mindspawn
Member (Idle past 215 days)
Posts: 1015
Joined: 10-22-2012


Message 144 of 196 (759858)
06-15-2015 4:04 PM
Reply to: Message 143 by NoNukes
06-15-2015 3:40 PM


Re: Interested
There is no evidence that any of these things affect decay rates. Every attempt to link a real world cause (e.g. neutrinos, cosmic radiation) to the supposed affect on decay rates has been an absolute failure.

The patent application in the EU failed because the scientists and their lawyers were utterly unable to correlate the measured decay rates with solar flares or neutrinos or even to describe how someone else might do so.

The supposed science you are relying isn't nearly as steady as it was the last time you were here, and it was shaky even then.

I agree they have battled to link a cause to the effect, however the effect remains absolutely real and observable. I agree it cant be used to predict solar flares, which is not the subject under discussion. I also agree that the "neutrino" link is not proved, I believe they are barking up the wrong tree regarding that.

Something they have overlooked but which is actually the most obvious cause/effect on decay rates is neutrons (NOT neutrinos). Neutron capture can slow decay by retaining the instability of the parent isotope, preventing its decay into a stable daughter isotope. Muons are the main source of background neutrons, and muon densities are directly susceptible to the same conditions as these recorded changes to decay rates.

So there is an existing and logical cause and effect that would by its very nature effect decay rates.


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NoNukes
Member
Posts: 9992
From: Central NC USA
Joined: 08-13-2010
Member Rating: 2.4


Message 145 of 196 (759861)
06-15-2015 4:55 PM
Reply to: Message 144 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 4:04 PM


Re: Interested
So there is an existing and logical cause and effect that would by its very nature effect decay rates.

Lol!

Mindspawn, perhaps you have forgotten that you and I discussed this neutron proposal in depth and that by the time our discussion I had listed a number of consequences of your 'neutron delay' proposal for which you had no answers.

Here are some consequences you are neglecting.

1) The decay rates you need to show a less than even one billion year earth are of the same magnitude as the neutron flux you are requiring since one neutron prevents one decay.

2) The isotopes in a radioactive sample would become increasingly heavy over time. That is not observed. Again the rate at which this would happen would be related to the rate at which you are claiming things would decay if not for neutron particles.

3) Radioactive samples that are shielded from neutrons would then return to their extremely high decay rates. For example, we should expect that the uranium in a shutdown reactor to decay away rapidly due to the neutron shielding placed all around the reactor compartment. Yet such behavior is not observed.

4) Since you are claiming that the neutron flux is slowing current decay rates to reduced levels, the neutron flux must exist right now, and not at some time in the past. It is easy to show that such a flux would be lethal to all biological life.

The neutron principle does not work. What's more, I am pretty clear that a review of our past discussion will reveal that you know that it does not work.


Under a government which imprisons any unjustly, the true place for a just man is also in prison. Thoreau: Civil Disobedience (1846)

History will have to record that the greatest tragedy of this period of social transition was not the strident clamor of the bad people, but the appalling silence of the good people. Martin Luther King

If there are no stupid questions, then what kind of questions do stupid people ask? Do they get smart just in time to ask questions? Scott Adams


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 Message 144 by mindspawn, posted 06-15-2015 4:04 PM mindspawn has responded

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JonF
Member
Posts: 3969
Joined: 06-23-2003
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 146 of 196 (759865)
06-15-2015 5:12 PM
Reply to: Message 141 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 3:01 PM


Re: Interested
I assume you are familiar with the recent Purdue University and Israel Geological Survey studies?But what can be seen is that there is a negative relationship between speed of decay and penetration of the earth's magnetic field. Slight changes to penetration (flares/seasons/suns core) cause slight changes to decay rates.

Correlation is not necessarily causation. And the existence of the effect is in doubt.

If slight changes to penetration of cosmic particles cause slight changes to decay rates, and proportionately, then its obvious that a complete blockout of the penetration of cosmic particles would have a dramatic effect on decay rates.

That's a mighty big if. And whether a complete blockout is physically possible is also in doubt. Even if cosmic particles do cause slight proportional decay rate changes, extrapolating a linear relationship is neither obvious nor justified and isn't going to get you to the tremendous speedup required. And you run right into the heat and radiation problem, and there are many more. Plus, without checking the math, I bet that linear changes in decay rates would lead to massive lack of consilience between methods, which we do not observe.

I notice you didn't address the many observations we've made that rule out the possibility of significant changes in decay rates.

Accelerated Nuclear Decay (AND) is a non-starter.


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JonF
Member
Posts: 3969
Joined: 06-23-2003
Member Rating: 2.3


(2)
Message 147 of 196 (759867)
06-15-2015 5:28 PM
Reply to: Message 142 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 3:16 PM


Re: Interested
Please put forward the actual evidence for an old earth that existed before Darwin.

Educated people knew that the Earth was far older than 10,000 or so years in the early 19th century, mostly before Darwin was born. You can start with The Age of the Earth: Early Attempts. For your convenience I've posted a version of Table 1 with the religious-based dates removed and easier reading, click here (PDF). Changing Views of the History of the Earth.

All 3 types of rocks, sedimentary, igneous and metamorphic have been known to form rapidly

Some sedimentary rocks under some conditions form fairly rapidly, but metamorphesis is another story.

You need evidence that all sedimentary or metamorphic rocks can form quickly and that they did form quickly under your assumed conditions. In detail. Don't forget the subaerial deposits such as the Coconino sandstone (and don't bother to claim it wasn't subaerial, we know all those ridiculous claims already). Oh, and the subaerial igneous deposits (lava, tuffs, ...) that are interleaved between the sedimentary layers.

Not holding my breath.

Please see my other posts for evidence that decay is not a constant.

Please demonstrate that decay of relevant isotopes would change so as to produce the observed consilience under the conditions you posit (not just handwaving). Include your explanation for the heat and radiation problem (then we can move on to other problems). Note that the RATE group (comprised of pretty much all the YE#Cs who understand radiometric dating but don't understand experimental procedures) couldn't talk themselves into less than 500 million year's worth of decay happening during Noye's Fludde.

Again, not holding my breath.


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mindspawn
Member (Idle past 215 days)
Posts: 1015
Joined: 10-22-2012


Message 148 of 196 (759868)
06-15-2015 5:29 PM
Reply to: Message 145 by NoNukes
06-15-2015 4:55 PM


Re: Interested
1) please explain your thinking here. I'm not following. I require nothing more than the existing neutron flux for this to work.
2) The parent isotope would only become heavy if there was a net gain, not a net decay. Current observations of decay rates show a net decay, not a net gain. Parent isotopes are decaying into daughter isotopes , albeit slowly.
3) Yes, if completely shielded from the neutron flux they would revert to their natural decay rate. However most neutron shields do not shield for high speed muons which create the neutron flux from within the sample. The source is internal, the shield therefore has no effect from the highly penetrative muons, which cause an internal neutron flux.
4) Please show that the current neutron flux is lethal to life. It does exist, and it is quite safe. This neutron flux brings near equilibrium only to very slow decaying isotopes, the effect on fast decaying isotopes (eg iron) is near non-existent, that would require a massive amount of background radiation to affect fast decayers. The slow decaying isotopes require only a slight neutron flux to reach near equilibrium.
This message is a reply to:
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JonF
Member
Posts: 3969
Joined: 06-23-2003
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 149 of 196 (759869)
06-15-2015 5:37 PM
Reply to: Message 144 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 4:04 PM


Re: Interested
I agree they have battled to link a cause to the effect,...

I.e. you have no reason to suppose you know the cause.

... however the effect remains absolutely real and observable.

That's far from universally accepted in the scientific community. But assuming for the sake of argument that it does happen, you're many many steps away from any significant effect on radiometric dating.

Neutron capture can slow decay by retaining the instability of the parent isotope, preventing its decay into a stable daughter isotope.

For some isotopes under a neutron flux that is not present at the surface of the Earth and I suspect would wipe out life on the surface. But it wouldn't affect all relevant isotopes, and it would not affect them appropriately. Especially 40K which decays by electron capture.

But I'll be glad to go over your math or critique your references.

If you have any.


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JonF
Member
Posts: 3969
Joined: 06-23-2003
Member Rating: 2.3


Message 150 of 196 (759870)
06-15-2015 5:41 PM
Reply to: Message 148 by mindspawn
06-15-2015 5:29 PM


Re: Interested
Please show your calculations or references for a neutron flux that slows radioactive decay significantly. For all relevant isotopes. Under specified conditions.
This message is a reply to:
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