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Radiocarbon dating can easily establish that humans have been on the earth for over twenty thousand years, at least twice as long as creationists are willing to allow. Therefore it should come as no surprise that creationists at the Institute for Creation Research ICR have been trying desperately to discredit this method for years. They have their work cut out for them, however, because radiocarbon C dating is one of the most reliable of all the radiometric dating methods. This article will answer several of the most common creationist attacks on carbon dating, using the question-answer format that has proved so useful to lecturers and debaters. Answer: Cosmic rays in the upper atmosphere are constantly converting the isotope nitrogen N into carbon C or radiocarbon.

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Students, particularly Young-Earth Creationists, may come in with misconceptions about how the age of the Earth and of various parts of the fossil record were determined.

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Professor timothy h. heaton

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Explore Teaching Examples Provide Feedback. Teaching about Radiometric Dating Students, particularly Young-Earth Creationists, may come in with misconceptions about how the age of the Earth and of various parts of the fossil record were determined.

How old is earth, and how do we know?

For example, they may assume that the whole geologic timeline is based on radiocarbon dating, which only gives reliable for dates back to 40, years before present Low, personal communication. Others will argue that decay rates could have changed Wise,or that God could have changed them, which might result in too-old dates.

The former argument is flawed because many radiometric dates are broadly supported by other estimates of change, such as tree rings and varved sediments for radiocarbon with some discrepancies, but still leaving the Earth far more than 6, years old. The second is not a scientific argument. If supernatural forces are changing the laws of physics while we're not looking, no form of science, "creation science" or otherwise, can prove or disprove it.

Thanks to fossil fuels, carbon dating is in jeopardy. one scientist may have an easy fix

Students may also be aware that bad assumptions and contamination can result in inaccurate radiometric dates. This is very true!

This doesn't change the enormous of consistent radiometric dates for many of the important events recorded by the Earth system. However, a lesson on sources of error and techniques used to minimize and detect error in dating may be more useful to students in later life than memorizing more dates. If students are convinced that our understanding of radioactive decay is completely incorrect, there are certain corollaries they need to consider.

For example, our nuclear power, nuclear weapons, nuclear waste, and aircraft carriers are utterly unsafe, as are many labs and hospitals. What are they going to do about that?

If only there were such an easy fix for climate change

How has our nuclear technology worked so well for so long? Resources Talkorigins. Wise, : an activity to teach about radiometric dating and decay curves using melting ice. Miller, points out that no radioactive isotope with a half-life of less than 80 million years is found in nature in our solar system except for daughters of other radioactive isotopes and those like C 14 that are being continuously formed by the environment. The table of missing nuclides radioactive isotopes is reproduced midway down Evidence for Evolution and an Old Earth: A Catholic Perspectiveanother Christian evolutionist website, which has a long section on radiometric dating.

Why Address Creationism? Reuse Citing and Terms of Use Material on this is offered under a Creative Commons unless otherwise noted below.

Doesn’t carbon dating disprove the bible?

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