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.
Radiocarbon dating uses isotopes of the element carbon. This isotope lets scientists learn the ages of once-living specimens from long ago.
Image via The Cosmic Story of Carbon-14 by Ethan Siegel, via Simon Swordy (U.
Atoms of the same element that have different numbers of neutrons are called isotopes.
Here’s an example using the simplest atom, hydrogen. Cosmic rays bombard Earth’s atmosphere, creating the unstable isotope carbon-14.
They point to a catastrophic origin for granites, consistent with the biblical timeframe for earth history and God’s judgment during the Flood.
is a technique used by scientists to learn the ages of biological specimens – for example, wooden archaeological artifacts or ancient human remains – from the distant past.
is a term for radiocarbon dating based on timestamps left by above-ground nuclear explosions, and it is especially useful for putting an absolute age on organisms that lived through those events.
In The Cosmic Story of Carbon-14 Ethan Siegel writes: The only major fluctuation [in carbon-14] we know of occurred when we began detonating nuclear weapons in the open air, back in the mid-20th Century.
Yet few people know how radiometric dating works or bother to ask what assumptions drive the conclusions. This figure wasn’t established by radiometric dating of the earth itself. Radiohalos shouldn’t exist, according to conventional wisdom!
Though they are very tiny, polonium radiohalos have a huge message that cannot be ignored.
Together with stratigraphic principles, radiometric dating methods are used in geochronology to establish the geological time scale.