Radiocarbon dating and creationists
Helens, which rises behind Anderson and his joyous grin.
Simply stated, radiometric dating is a way of determining the age of a sample of material using the decay rates of radio-active nuclides to provide a 'clock.' It relies on three basic rules, plus a couple of critical assumptions.C 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!9), the K-Ar method cannot be used to date samples that are much younger than 6,000 years old (Dalrymple, 1991, p. 93)Cambridge, Massachusetts, USA, performed the K-Ar dating for Austin et al. However, when they did, their website clearly stated in a footnote that their equipment could not accurately date rocks that are younger than about 2 million years old ("We cannot analyze samples expected to be younger than 2 M. Y."; also see discussions by advanced equipment, 'memory effects' can be a problem with very young samples (Dalrymple, 1969, p. That is, very tiny amounts of argon contaminants from previous analyses may remain within the equipment, which precludes accurate dates for very young samples.
For older samples, which contain more 40Ar, the contamination is diluted and has insignificant effects. De Paolo, 1998, 'Intercalibration of Standards, Absolute Ages and Uncertainties in 40Ar/39Ar Dating', Chem.
Steve Austin and his associates at the Institute for Creation 'Research' (ICR) collected a dacite sample from Mt. Helens, Washington State, USA, which probably erupted in 1986 AD. then ineffectively separated the sample into several mineral and glass 'fractions', submitted the dacite and its 'fractions' for potassium 40-argon 40 (K-Ar) dating, and subsequently used the bogus results to inappropriately attack the K-Ar method.
Considering that the half-life of potassium-40 (40K) is fairly long (1,250 million years, Mc Dougall and Harrison, 1999, p.
Protons and neutrons together are called nucleons, meaning particles that can appear in the atomic nucleus.
A nuclide of an element, also called an isotope of an element, is an atom of that element that has a specific number of nucleons.
However, rather than dealing with this issue and critically evaluating Austin's other procedures (including the unacceptable mineral and glass impurities in his 'fractions'), YECs loudly proclaim that the results are discrepant with the 1986 AD eruption.