Saturday, November 10, 2012

The Theory and Problems of the Carbon-14 Time Clock – Part II

Continuing from the last post, if Willard F. Libby’s method of radiocarbon dating is to be retained as a reliable geochronometer, then either one must face the fact that it actually dates the atmosphere itself as under 30,000 years, or discard the radioactive time clock completely.
Take the problem of the half-life of carbon-14, for instance. When trying to measure age by how much C-14 has decayed, there is a definite limit as to the age that can be determined, even using Libby’s criteria. As an example, the half-life of carbon-14 is 5,730 years—that is, every 5,730 years, half of it decays away. After two half lives, a quarter is left; after three half lives, only an eighth; after 10 half lives—57,300 years—less than a thousandth is left. In fact, a lump of C-14 as massive as the earth would have all decayed in less than a million years. So if samples were really over a billion years old, there would be no radiocarbon left. But we do find carbon in existence in samples, especially with very sensitive C-14 detectors.
An example of this is found in diamonds, which are the hardest substance known. This means its interior should be very resistant to contamination. Diamond requires very high pressure to form—pressure found naturally on earth only at great depth below the surface—somewhere around 60 to 120 miles deep. Geologists believe that the ones we find must have been transported supersonically to the surface, in extremely violent eruptions through volcanic pipes. According to evolutionists, the diamonds formed about 1–3 billion years ago. However, the diamonds contain radiocarbon—suggesting a much younger age. Geophysicist John Baumgartdner, part of the RATE research group, investigated C-14 in a number of diamonds. There should be no C-14 at all if they really were over a billion years old, yet the radiocarbon lab reported that there was over 10 times the detection limit. Thus they had a radiocarbon ‘age’ far less than a million years! Dr Baumgardner repeated this test with six more alluvial diamonds from Namibia, which had even more radiocarbon, giving evidence to a much younger world.
Another very important assumption made by Libby was that whatever sample was being measured, it had a known amount of carbon-14 when it died. No matter what organism, no matter where found, no matter in what era, Libby decided that all would have the same amount of carbon-14.
The trouble is, there is absolutely no way of going back in time to verify that the many assumptions made were accurate or, as in this case, how much carbon-14 a specific specimen had when it died! In order to determine this, Libby calculated that the carbon-14 buildup had reached a steady-state, or equilibrium, which meant that no additional build up of carbon-14 would be taking place at the time of the fossil’s death. However, his own measurements showed him that carbon-14 buildup had only reached 0.78—which means that the amount of carbon-14 is still building up, and would have been still building up at the time of the fossil’s death. This means, of course, that the carbon-14 in any fossil could not have reached equilibrium—that is, no fossil could be as old as 30,000 years, and actually would be considerably younger
However, as "everyone knew" at that time and since, the earth was 2 billion years old (now considered 4.55 billion), so despite his findings, he decided a steady-state, or equilibrium, had been reached, because “everyone knew the earth was older than 30,000 years.”
So the question being asked, “Can the carbon-14 time clock be accurate?” And the answer is “Obviously not!”
Even so, Carbon-14 dating is considered by most scientists, and especially laymen, as a well established and unquestionable fact.  However, as original and recent studies and information shows, it is not! To restate should there be any question:
Development. As has been pointed out, radiocarbon dating was developed shortly after World War II by Dr. Willard Frank Libby, who received a Nobel Prize for his work.
Equilibrium vs. Non-equilibrium. In the early development of this time clock concept, a decision was made whether to use an equilibrium process, or a non-equilibrium process to read the clock itself. The condition of equilibrium takes approximately 30,000 years to achieve.  Thus, for the equilibrium process to be used, the Earth itself would have to be at least 30,000 years old.
Not in Equilibrium.  Dr. Libby found evidence in the early days of its development that Radiocarbon may not be in equilibrium in the earth as a whole since he could not detect an unbalance experimentally.  Actually, current data on the neutron source strength of C14 via the reaction N14 shows that C14 is not in steady state in the atmosphere—thus showing that the earth’s atmosphere is less than 30,000 years old. Normally, such evidence would have led a scientist to choose a non-equilibrium process to read the clock
Choosing to Ignore His Findings. Dr. Libby chose to reject this evidence on the basis of what he considered to be common knowledge that the earth is not merely more than 30,000 years old, but that it was billions of years old. However, had Libby stuck with his findings and used the non-equilibrium data he found, we would be looking today at carbon-14 measuring the Earth at about 12,000 years old.
Calculating the Time Clock.  Using Libby’s adjusted figures, if a fossil has one-fourth as much carbon-14 as living things have, it is assumed under the Libby time clock to have lived 2 half lives back in time (17,190 years old). Fossils with one-thirty-second as much carbon-14 are assumed to be 4 half lives back in time (28,650 years old), which is about four times as old as the actual age when using the correct figures Libby first measured and all recent measurements show. This is a considerable difference in measuring time under any clock, and should point out the fallacy of the Radiocarbon Time Clock, or Carbon-14 Time Clock that is so widely used today.
Libby’s original low level anticoincidence apparatus devised for his original C-14 measurements that dated the Earth to under 30,000 year of age
Rejection of Experimental Data.  But, in rejecting this non-equilibrium evidence, Dr. Libby adopted the equilibrium model to read his radiocarbon time clock.  Had he used the non-equilibrium process as the observed data and other postulates suggested, his method could still easily have been applied (and with relatively small differences for ages no greater than 3,000 years).  However, it would have dated the whole atmosphere of the earth at roughly 10,000-12,000 years of age!
What this means is, if you program a computer with base data that the value of 1 is really 1.5, or that 1 + 1 = 3, 2 + 2 = 7, etc., then no matter what mathematical question is asked of the program in the future, it will always give consistent answers, but those answers will always be wrong whether they deal with bank accounts, building dimensions, or the national debt.  Carbon-dating gives us consistent answers, but they are consistently wrong!
(See the next post, “The Theory and Problems of the Carbon-14 Time Clock – Part III,” for a continuation of how Libby’s C-14 Time Clock, used by all archaeologists to date the age of their findings, is based upon numerous unprovable and often conflicting assumption)

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