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Dating Fossils and Rocks.

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1 Dating Fossils and Rocks

2 Topics Carbon-14 dating Radioisotope dating The Biblical age of the earth

3 The Atom Nucleus Electron Fundamental unit of matter
Made up of components called subatomic particles Proton (positive charge) Neutron (no electrical charge) Electron (negative charge) Nucleus Electron

4 What is Carbon?

5 Carbon has unique properties that are essential for life on earth.
Familiar to us as: the black substance in charred wood, as diamonds, and the graphite in ‘lead’ pencils, also

6 carbon comes in several forms, or isotopes.
One rare form has atoms that are 14 times as heavy as hydrogen atoms:

7 Types of carbon (isotopes)
Carbon-14 is also referred to as: C-14 Carbon-14 14 C Radiocarbon Types of carbon (isotopes) C 14 6 9 16 Atomic mass Atomic number

8 Atomic Mass The atomic mass (ma) is the mass of an atom at rest, most often expressed in unified atomic mass units. The atomic mass may be considered to be the total mass of protons, neutrons and electrons in a single atom (when the atom is motionless).

9 Atomic Number The atomic number (also known as the proton number) is the number of protons found in the nucleus of an atom. It is traditionally represented by the symbol Z. The atomic number uniquely identifies a chemical element.

10 In an atom of neutral charge, the number of electrons also equals the atomic number.
The atomic number is closely related to the mass number, which is the number of protons and neutrons in the nucleus of an atom. The mass number defines the isotope of the element and often comes after the name of the element, e.g. carbon-14 (used in carbon dating).

11 What is Radioactive Decay?
The nucleus of an atom changes into a new element The proton number (atomic number) must change A neutron changes into a proton C 14 6 N 7

12 How C-14 is Produced

13 Carbon-14 is made when cosmic rays knock neutrons out of atomic nuclei in the upper atmosphere.
These displaced neutrons, now moving fast, hit ordinary nitrogen (14N) at lower altitudes, converting it into 14C. Unlike common carbon (12C), 14C is unstable and slowly decays, changing it back to nitrogen and releasing energy. This instability makes it radioactive.

14 Ordinary carbon (12C) is found in the carbon dioxide (CO2) in the air, which is taken up by plants, which in turn are eaten by animals. So a bone, or a leaf or a tree, or even a piece of wooden furniture, contains carbon. When the 14C has been formed, like ordinary carbon (12C), it combines with oxygen to give carbon dioxide (14CO2), and so it also gets cycled through the cells of plants and animals.

15 Cosmic Rays (radiation)
How C-14 is Produced Cosmic Rays (radiation) C-14 combines with oxygen to form carbon dioxide (CO2) Forms C-14 Collision with atmosphere (N14)

16 We can take a sample of air, count how many 12C atoms there are for every 14C atom, and calculate the 14C/12C ratio. Because 14C is so well mixed up with 12C, we expect to find that this ratio is the same if we sample a leaf from a tree, or a part of your body.

17 Changing N-14 into C-14

18 How the Carbon Dating Clock Works
Once a plant or animal dies the clock starts The plant or animal no longer takes in C-14 The C-14 present in the plant or animal begins to decay No more C-14 intake C-14 continues to decay

19 In living things, although 14C atoms are constantly changing back to 14N, they are still exchanging carbon with their surroundings, so the mixture remains about the same as in the atmosphere. However, as soon as a plant or animal dies, the 14C atoms which decay are no longer replaced, so the amount of 14C in that once-living thing decreases as time goes on. In other words, the 14C/12C ratio gets smaller.

20 So, we have a ‘clock’ which starts ticking the moment something dies.
Obviously, this works only for things which were once living. It cannot be used to date volcanic rocks, for example.

21 Carbon-14 Life Cycle

22 The rate of decay of 14C is such that half of an amount will convert back to 14N in 5,730 years (plus or minus 40 years). This is the ‘half-life.’ So, in two half-lives, or 11,460 years, only one-quarter will be left.

23 Carbon-14 Life Cycle N C N 14 7 14 6 14 7 5,730 year half-life
Cosmic radiation N 14 7 C 14 6 N 14 7 5,730 year half-life

24 Carbon-14 Dating

25 Thus, if the amount of 14C relative to 12C in a sample is one-quarter of that in living organisms at present, then it has a theoretical age of 11,460 years. Anything over about 50,000 years old, should theoretically have no detectable 14C left. That is why radiocarbon dating cannot give millions of years. In fact, if a sample contains 14C, it is good evidence that it is not millions of years old.

26 However, things are not quite so simple.
First, plants discriminate against carbon dioxide containing 14C. That is, they take up less than would be expected and so they test older than they really are. Furthermore, different types of plants discriminate differently. This also has to be corrected for.

27 Second, the ratio of 14C/12C in the atmosphere has not been constant—for example, it was higher before the industrial era when the massive burning of fossil fuels released a lot of carbon dioxide that was depleted in 14C. This would make things which died at that time appear older in terms of carbon dating. Then there was a rise in 14CO2 with the advent of atmospheric testing of atomic bombs in the 1950s. This would make things carbon-dated from that time appear younger than their true age.

28 Measurement of 14C in historically dated objects (e. g
Measurement of 14C in historically dated objects (e.g., seeds in the graves of historically dated tombs) enables the level of 14C in the atmosphere at that time to be estimated, and so partial calibration of the ‘clock’ is possible. Accordingly, carbon dating carefully applied to items from historical times can be useful.

29 However, even with such historical calibration, archaeologists do not regard 14C dates as absolute because of frequent anomalies. They rely more on dating methods that link into historical records. Outside the range of recorded history, calibration of the 14C clock is not possible.

30 Carbon-14 Dating Used only on organic material Cannot be used to date rocks Maximum age limit about 60,000 years

31 Quantity of C-14 in a Fossil
The C-14 dating method relies on measuring the amount of C-14 in the fossil If there is a lot of C-14 remaining in the fossil, we assume it has not been dead very long If there is very little C-14 remaining in the fossil we assume most of it has decayed and the animal lived a long time ago (i.e. 30,000 or more years)

32 We need to know two things
What Do We Need to Know? We need to know two things How fast C-14 decays (measured in half-lives - this is known: 5,730 years) The starting amount of C-14 in the fossil We know number 1 How can we know how much C-14 was in an organism 5,000 years ago?

33 Calculating the Starting Amount of C-14
The dating method relies on measuring the ratio of carbon-12 to carbon-14 in the sample The ratio today in the atmosphere is 1-trillion to 1

34 Determining the Age from the C-12/C-14 Ratio
Amount of stable C-12 Amount of unstable C-14 Ratio Years Dead # Half-lives 100 Trillion 100 1-T to 1 100 Trillion 50 2-T to 1 5,730 1 100 Trillion 25 4-T to 1 11,460 2 100 Trillion 12.5 8-T to 1 17,190 3 100 Trillion 6 16-T to 1 22,920 4 100 Trillion 3 32-T to 1 28,650 5 Are there any assumptions in this process?

35 30,000 years to reach equilibrium
The Underlying Assumption Has the ratio of C-12 to C-14 in the atmosphere always been the same? If YES, then the C-14 dating is valid for up to 60,000 years If NO, then we have no valid way of knowing the starting amount of C-14 and dates will be invalid 30,000 years to reach equilibrium

36 Dr. William Libby Richard, Milton, Shattering the Myths of Darwinism, 1997, p (W. F. Libby, Radiocarbon Dating, 1955) “He found a considerable discrepancy in his measurements indicating that, apparently, radiocarbon was being created in the atmosphere somewhere around 25 percent faster than it was becoming extinct. Since this result was inexplicable by any conventional scientific means, Libby put the discrepancy down to experimental error.”

37 Experiments on Equilibrium
“During the 1960s, Libby’s experiments were repeated by chemists… The new experiments, though, revealed that the discrepancy observed by Libby was not merely an experimental error – it did exist.” Richard, Milton, Shattering the Myths of Darwinism, 1997, p. 32.

38 Experiments on Equilibrium
Richard Lingenfelter, “Production of C-14 by cosmic ray neutrons”, Review of Geophysics, 1963, p.51. “There is strong indication, despite the large errors, that the present natural production rate exceeds the natural decay rate by as much as 25 percent.”

39 New Techniques Show Young Dates
Walter Brown (Ph.D. Mechanical Engineering and Professor of Physics), In the Beginning, 2001, p. 245. “The new atomic accelerator technique has consistently detected at least small amounts of carbon-14 in every specimen – even materials that evolutionists claim are millions of years old, such as coal… In one study of eleven sets of ancient human bones, all were dated at about 5,000 radiocarbon years or less.”

40 Problem with the Calculating of the Starting Amount of C-14

41 The amount of cosmic rays penetrating the earth’s atmosphere affects the amount of 14C produced and therefore dating the system. The amount of cosmic rays reaching the earth varies with the sun’s activity, and with the earth's passage through magnetic clouds as the solar system travels around the Milky Way galaxy.

42 A stronger magnetic field deflects more cosmic rays away from the earth.
Overall, the energy of the earth’s magnetic field has been decreasing, so more 14C is being produced now, than in the past. This will make old things look older than they really are.

43 Also, the Genesis flood would have greatly upset the carbon balance.
The flood buried a huge amount of carbon, which became coal, oil, etc., lowering the total 12C in the biosphere (including the atmosphere—plants regrowing after the flood absorb CO2, which is not replaced by the decay of the buried vegetation). Total 14C is also proportionately lowered at this time, but whereas no terrestrial process generates any more 12C, 14C is continually being produced, and at a rate which does not depend on carbon levels (it comes from nitrogen).

44 Therefore, the 14C/12C ratio in plants/animals/the atmosphere before the flood had to be lower than what it is now. Unless this effect (which is additional to the magnetic field issue just discussed) were corrected for, carbon dating of fossils formed in the flood would give ages much older than the true ages.

45 Conclusion on Carbon-14 Dating

46 The key assumption has been shown to be false (equilibrium)
Carbon-14 dating is a reliable dating method for less than 3,000 years and not the claimed 60,000 found in many textbooks Carbon-14 dating is based on an assumption

47 What are they and how do they operate? What is the basic perception?
Radioisotope Dating Methods What are they and how do they operate? What is the basic perception? How accurate are they? Are there any hidden assumptions?

48 Education Biology: Visualizing Life, Holt, Rinehart, Winston, 1998, p.177. “Using radioactive dating, scientists have determined that the Earth is about 4.5 billion years old, ancient enough for all species to have been formed through evolution.”

49 Education National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT), 1995 Position Statements. “Radiometric and other dating techniques, when used properly, are highly accurate means of establishing dates in the history of the planet and in the history of life.”

50 There are various other radiometric dating methods used today to give ages of millions or billions of years for rocks. These techniques, unlike carbon dating, mostly use the relative concentrations of parent and daughter products in radioactive decay chains.

51 Understanding Assumptions
For example, potassium-40 decays to argon-40; uranium-238 decays to lead-206 via other elements like radium; uranium-235 decays to lead-207 Uranium Decay Lead Potassium Argon Decay

52 The isotope concentrations can be measured very accurately, but isotope concentrations are not dates. To derive ages from such measurements, unprovable assumptions have to be made such as:

53 The starting conditions are known (for example, that there was no daughter isotope present at the start, or that we know how much was there). Decay rates have always been constant. Systems were closed or isolated so that no parent or daughter isotopes were lost or added.

54 These techniques are applied to igneous rocks, and are normally seen as giving the time since solidification.

55 Hour Glass Example

56 Can you calculate how long you were outside?
Hour Glass Example Can you calculate how long you were outside?

57 Examples of Dating Sunset Crater, Northern Arizona
Potassium-argon: 200,000+ Reality: AD 1065 Lava flows at Mt. Ngaurhoe, New Zealand Potassium-argon: 275,000 Reality: 1949, 1954, 1975 Hualalai basalt, Hawaii Potassium-argon: 1.4 – 22 million Reality: AD 1801 Mt. Etna basalt, Sicily Potassium-argon: 140,000 – 350,000 Reality: 1972 Apollo 11 brought back some moon rocks. The rocks were dated using 4 different methods. The range between the oldest and youngest date was almost 4-billion years. Apollo 16 brought back some moon rocks that were dated at 18-billion years. To fix the problem they subjected the rocks to acid to melt out the lead and then re-dated and got 4.5 billion years. (Science magazine Jan 30, 1973) Sunset Crater in n. Arizona is known to be a recent volcano. Indian artefacts and relics are found within the rocks formed by the eruption. The volcano last erupted some 900 years ago. Two lava flows have been dated giving ages of 210,000 and 230,000. Hualalai volcano in Hawaii Known to have erupted in were dated with a variety of methods. 12 dates were taken which ranged from 140 million years to 2.96 billion years. The average date was 1.41 billion. There have been many explanations to explain these results away (as the lava rose, the older material from inside the earth rose with it, but they are unable to explain why such a variance in ages). If this is the explanation, then why could this not also be the case for other dates? This does not disprove radioisotope dating, but it does demonstrate the tremendous inconsistency in the interpretation of the method. The conventional K-Ar dating method was applied to the 1986 dacite flow from the new lava dome at Mount St. Helens, Washington. Porphyritic dacite which solidified on the surface of the lava dome in 1986 gives a whole rock K-Ar ‘age’ of million years. Steven A. Austin, “Excess Argon within Mineral Concentrates from the New Dacite lava Dome at Mount St. Helens Volcano, 1996

58 Examples of Dating Diamonds from Zaire: 6 billion years old!
Mount St. Helens rocks 300,000 years old!

59 Assumptions and Dating
Assumption of starting amounts of elements Assumption of steady decay rate Assumption of a closed system If you base your theory on a wrong assumption, all your work can be correct, but the result will be wrong.

60 Scientific Evidences for a Young Earth
Rapid disintegration of comets Sediment on the ocean floor Decay of the Earth’s magnetic field Carbon-14 ratio in the atmosphere Helium in the Earth’s atmosphere Radiohalos for polonium in granites Population statistics Recession of the moon

61 Views on Creation Literal 6-day creation Gap theory Day-Age Theory
Progressive creation Which one is correct? How can we know?

62 Long Ages and the Bible “Very Good” does not mean what it says
Genesis 1 cannot be understood without outside scientific knowledge Death before sin The Genesis Flood was not worldwide The Bible (not just Genesis) becomes open to interpretation

63 Genesis Chapter 1 Charles Taylor (Ph.D. Linguistics/emphasis on Old Testament Hebrew), “Linguistics, Genesis and Evolution”, 1981. “Contrary to what people think it’s not impossible to know. Genesis chapter 1 was written in the Hebrew language which is consistent in using one structure for narrative and quite a different one for poetry.”

64 Are the days of creation literal days?
The Creation Days Are the days of creation literal days? Meaning of ‘Yom’ Yom with a number Evening and morning Genesis 1:14 Exodus 20:11 Words used to indicate time Narrative versus poetry (VSO or SVO) In the beginning created God the heavens… = VSO Genealogies (Gen 5, 1Chron 1, Luke 3)

65 The Creation Days Professor James Barr, Professor of Hebrew at the University of Oxford. “Probably so far as I know, there is no professor of Hebrew or Old Testament at any world-class university who dares not believe that the writer(s) of Gen intended to convey to their readers the ideas that creation took place in a series of six days which are the same as the days of 24 hours we now experience…”

66 The Creation Days Dr. Robert Cole (Ph.D. Semitic Languages), “A PhD looks at the Genesis Days” “There is nothing in the Bible to obviate the idea that the days in Genesis were 24 hour type days.”

67 Language and the Meaning of Day
Charles Taylor (Ph.D. Linguistics/emphasis on Old Testament Hebrew), “Linguistics, Genesis and Evolution”, 1981 “A very important point that most people overlook when it comes to word use, is that it is impossible to use a word as a symbol or figuratively unless it already has a literal meaning. The word ‘day’ cannot, in Hebrew or English, be used in the abstract of symbolic sense unless it already has a clearly understood literal meaning.”

68 The Creation Days “It is a fact that before the modern era, nobody in the history of the church for over three thousand years ever questioned the chronology of the Bible, and only a tiny handful ever questioned that the six days of Genesis 1 were ordinary 24-hour-type days.” James B. Jordan (D. Litt), Creation in Six Days, p. 17.

69 Biblical Implications of an Old Earth
Genesis chapter 1 requires scientific information to interpret There was death before sin The Genesis Flood was NOT a worldwide flood What does God’s “very good” mean in Genesis 1:31?

70 How Important is Creation?

71 It is not a Salvation issue, but…
Authority of God’s Word … Jesus is the Creator Do we need the Old Testament? Creation is the foundation for the Gospel Why did Jesus die on the cross? What is happening in schools today? Attacks on the Bible Lack of respect by Christians for the Bible Evolution is being taught as a fact Evolution means materialism (No Creator) Evolution started in the Garden of Eden

72 Creation is the Foundation
Chuck Colson, How Now Shall We Live, 1999, p. 100. “Creation is the first element of the Christian worldview, the foundation on which everything else is built. It is the basis of human dignity, for our origin tells us who we are, why we are here, and how we should treat one another.”

73 Who Believes in a Six-Day Creation
Kurt Wise Ph.D. Paleontology Steven A. Austin Ph.D. Geology John Morris Ph.D. Geology Elaine Kennedy Ph.D. Geology Donald B. DeYoung Ph.D. Physics Walter Brown Ph.D. Mechanical Engineering Russell Humphreys Ph.D. Physics Keith Wanser Ph.D. Condensed Matter Physics Danny R. Faulkner Ph.D. Astronomy Duane T. Gish Ph.D. Biochemistry Ross S. Anderson Ph.D. Biochemistry Lane P. Lester Ph.D. Genetics Linda K. Walkup Ph.D. Molecular Genetics Ray Bohlin Ph.D. Molecular Biology Gary E. Parker Ph.D. Biology Jonathan Sarfati Ph.D. Physical Chemistry Charles Taylor Ph.D. Linguistics (O.T.) Robert Cole Ph.D. Semitic Languages Steven Boyd Ph.D Hebraic and Cognitive Studies Drs. John MacArthur, James Kennedy, David Jeremiah, Tim LaHaye

74 Belief in a Young Earth Dr. Keith Wanser (Ph.D. Condensed Matter Physics), Creation ex nihilo, 1999, p. 39. (Dr. Wanser works with theoretical condensed matter physics and basic theories of matter) “I am convinced there is far more evidence for a recent, six-day creation and a global Flood than there is for an old earth and evolution.”

75 Psalm 118:8 It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man John 17:17 Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth

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