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Carbon-14 dating Errors

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posted on Nov, 19 2014 @ 10:43 AM
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originally posted by: tetra50
a reply to: Arbitrageur
I wonder, am I the only one in the thread who sees the irony in criticizing the age of some of these papers/evidence as to the legitimacy or lack thereof in carbon-14 as a dating method, to determine the age of the earth, overall? Perhaps I am.
Probably so, since as peter vlar points out, carbon-14 dating isn't relevant to determining the age of the Earth.

originally posted by: peter vlar
Maybe so because unless I missed so,ethimg, 14C has no bearing on dating the age of the earth in any way. As has been noted several times in this thread 14C has so e distinct limitations. It can only be used to date organic matter and because of the short half-life of 5730 years its effectiveness is pretty much nonexistent after the 60KYA mark.
Correct. To everyone except young earth creationists who believe the Earth is 6000-10,000 years old, the 60,000 year limitation of C-14 dating isn't going to tell us anything about something that's billions of years old.

Now about neutrinos, there have been some very dubious claims about the ability of neutrinos to affect radiation rates, possibly even on dating methods that would be relevant to dating the Earth (non-carbon-14 methods). There is a great amount of skepticism about these claims and experimental evidence is scant, so while it's unlikely they have an effect, let's assume for a moment that neutrinos do have the claimed effect. So what? The effect won't be more than a few percent and there are already other sources of uncertainty approaching that level due to various models for the accretion process of the solar system.

Neutrino effect on determined age of the Earth

Slusher (117) and Rybka (110) also propose that neutrinos can change decay rates, citing an hypothesis by Dudley (40) that decay is triggered by neutrinos in a "neutrino sea" and that changes in the neutrino flux might affect decay rates. This argument has been refuted by Brush (20), who points out that Dudley's hypothesis not only requires rejection of both relativity and quantum mechanics, two of the most spectacularly successful theories in modern science, but is disproved by recent experiments. Dudley himself rejects the conclusions drawn from his hypothesis by Slusher (117) and Rybka (110), noting that the observed changes in decay rates are insufficient to change the age of the Earth by more than a few percent (Dudley, personal communication, 1981, quoted in 20, p.51). Thus, even if Slusher and Rybka were correct which they are not the measured age of the Earth would still exceed 4 billion years.


So the bottom line is neutrinos probably don't have any significant effect on radioactive decay rates, but even if they do, it's a question of splitting hairs and therefore the estimate of Earth's age won't be affected that much and is still well over 4 billion years old even if the neutrino claims were true which they probably aren't. So that makes tetra50's concern over neutrinos to be somewhat misplaced.



the 4.54 bn year date is based on the oldest rocks we have been able to find. This means that the date is the minimum age of the earth and it is likely older and we simply can't say with any degree of certainty without actual evidence to test for data.
Actually the oldest Earth rocks are thought to be 4.404 billion years old which puts a minimum on the age of the Earth so 4.404 billion years is the age I would cite in reference to your statement above, rather than 4.54 billion years, which is more like our best estimate using other sources like meteorites.

Age of the Earth

The oldest such minerals analyzed to date – small crystals of zircon from the Jack Hills of Western Australia – are at least 4.404 billion years old. Comparing the mass and luminosity of the Sun to those of other stars, it appears that the solar system cannot be much older than those rocks. Calcium-aluminium-rich inclusions – the oldest known solid constituents within meteorites that are formed within the solar system – are 4.567 billion years old, giving an age for the solar system and an upper limit for the age of Earth.
So, Earth is likely not much older than 4.54 billion years, unless you consider 4.567 billion years much older. I don't consider that much older and the Earth is likely younger than that upper limit.




posted on Nov, 19 2014 @ 11:15 AM
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One of the best arguments I've heard for a relatively "young" earth (as opposed to millions of years old) is the rate at which the sun is burning down in size.

You'll have to forgive my lack of scientific expertise, but here's the jist of the theory:

We know that the sun is burning up at a certain rate, shrinking in size. If we assume that it has always been burning at this rate, you take that number and multiply by millions of years, the sun would have been so big and so hot that earth could not have sustained life.

This was just something I read a couple years ago and it stuck with me as an intriguing point of view on how long life has existed on earth.



posted on Nov, 19 2014 @ 11:18 AM
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a reply to: Arbitrageur

First, I appreciate the more specific info regarding neutrinos. It's not a topic I'm as up to date on as I probably should be. As for the ages I ascribed for the oldest dated rocks, I was going off of memory and being a tad lazy instead of looking it up and double checking so again I appreciate the correct information. In all honesty though, the 100 million year difference on a geologic scale is a pretty minuscule discrepancy but nonetheless I'm humble enough to admit when I'm in error and always thankful to have the proper data so I don't perpetuate misinformation.



posted on Nov, 19 2014 @ 11:24 AM
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a reply to: TWJones

The sun is losing mass through fusion, but it really isn't that much mass.

Is the Sun Shrinking?


There have been claims over the years that the Sun is contracting slowly over time. Here, we examine that claim.

Let us assume that the Sun is shrinking is by gravity. Then from the equation that scientists have for the change of the Sun's luminosity (luminosity is an energy output) versus its radius, the Sun would be shrinking in its radius 74 centimeters per year. We would have detected such a noticeable change over the past history (over 500 years this would be a 0.005 arc seconds difference in the radius of the Sun from our viewing position on the Earth), and we haven't detected such a change. So our observations don't show the Sun to be shrinking by gravitational contraction.


So the sun isn't shrinking due to gravity.


In units of tons, every second, the Sun's fusion processes are converting about 700 million tons of hydrogen into helium "ashes". In doing so, 0.7 percent of the hydrogen matter (5 million tons) disappears as pure energy. (My reference for this paragraph is "The Sun" chapter in _The New Solar System_ editor: Beatty and Chaikin, Sky Publishing Press.)

Since the Sun's current mass is 1.989 x 10^33 g, the percentage of its current mass that will be converted to energy is:

6.8 x 10^29 g / 1.989 x 10^33 g = 0.00034 of its current mass or .034 percent.

In other words, the Sun's mass at the end of its lifetime is 99.966% of its current mass. See.. nothing to worry about!


So I don't know where you read that rationale, but is highly flawed. And is probably derived from faulty science. Some non-scientist probably read that the sun was shrinking then ran with it without looking at the math or science involved.



posted on Nov, 19 2014 @ 12:36 PM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
So I don't know where you read that rationale, but is highly flawed.
The origin is very likely a presentation John Eddy made in 1979 about a shrinking sun. Then in 1984 Eddy reported that data from 1967 to 1980 showed the sun was growing, but this apparent contradiction was resolved when it was determined the size of the sun pulsates on cycles of about 76-80 years. Someone named Hedinger latched on to the shrinking part to support his religious views but I don't see where Hedinger ever acknowledged the growing data or the 76-80 year cycles. This article explains what happened.


originally posted by: TWJones
We know that the sun is burning up at a certain rate, shrinking in size.
Not really about carbon-14 dating errors, but since John Eddy's paper was published in 1979 suggesting a shrinking sun, we've since learned that the sun pulsates on 80 year cycles which Eddy was not aware of at the time, so he was noticing the effect of this cycle rather than any prolonged shrinking. Moreover, the effects of fuel depletion on star size are counterintuitive but predicted by stellar physics. As the sun continues to lose mass, about 5 billion years from now its size will have increased significantly, not decreased. The sun will be so large that it's outer edge will be about where earth's orbit is today, and Earth may avoid getting swallowed by the sun because its orbit will be a little further out than it is today due to the sun's lower mass.

The sun

The Sun does not have enough mass to explode as a supernova. Instead it will exit the main sequence in approximately 5.4 billion years and start to turn into a red giant. It is calculated that the Sun will become sufficiently large to engulf the current orbits of the Solar System's inner planets, possibly including Earth.

Even before it becomes a red giant, the luminosity of the Sun will have nearly doubled, and Earth will be hotter than Venus is today. Once the core hydrogen is exhausted in 5.4 billion years, the Sun will expand into a subgiant phase and slowly double in size over about half a billion years. It will then expand more rapidly over about half a billion years until it is over two hundred times larger than today and a couple of thousand times more luminous.



originally posted by: peter vlar
In all honesty though, the 100 million year difference on a geologic scale is a pretty minuscule discrepancy
Relative to the age of the Earth, I agree 100 million years isn't much.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 01:48 PM
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originally posted by: OperationBlackRose
Can any date be trusted when using Carbon-Dating?


'Living mollusk shell were carbon dated as being 2,300 years old.' (Science 1963)

'A freshly killed seal was carbon dated as having died 1,300 years ago' (Antarctic Journal 1971)

'Shells from living snails were carbon dated as being 27,000 years old.' (Science 1984)



No way this is true, almighty science is infallible! Sure i never made my own opinion on the topic, or researched carbon-dating, but any enemy of creationism is an unconditional friend of mine. Get out of the dark ages, any science that doesn't agree with mainstream science is not science!



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 01:54 PM
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a reply to: cooperton

I too like to comment before reading the thread in question.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 02:11 PM
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originally posted by: AgentShillington

originally posted by: OperationBlackRose
(Natural History 1949)
(Science 1963)
(Antarctic Journal 1971)
(Geological Survey Professional Paper 862 1975)
(Science 1984)
(Quaternary Research 1992)
(Geological Survey Professional Paper 862 1975)
(Anthropological Journal of Canada 1981)


Any papers from this century?


Why? Because carbon dating updating applications? How does something get 'More accurate" when carbon dating? Isn't dating something dating something no matter the technology?



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 02:21 PM
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originally posted by: GetHyped
a reply to: cooperton

I too like to comment before reading the thread in question.


you can get away with it as long as you blindly regurgitate a superficial interpretation of mainstream science



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 02:31 PM
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a reply to: Chrisfishenstein

Because the technology used to date the objects improves. 30 years is a long time. Look at how computers have improved since then.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 02:34 PM
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a reply to: cooperton

Sigh

Let me get a feel for what position you're coming from: how old do you believe the Earth is?



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 02:49 PM
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originally posted by: OperationBlackRose


The problem with anthropology and paleontology is that if someone is doing his/her thesis or doctoral dissertation on a specific fossil, he/she will work with casts or remakes, not the real fossil remains. And most of the remakes of remakes. Very few people are ever allowed to see the originals, let alone study them.

.


There is way more to palaeontology than "casts or remakes". Personally, I have extracted and worked on foraminifera, the originals (tests), not the casts (oh, imagine trying to cast a foram!). I have extracted and worked on radiolaria. I have held Moa bones and facilitated the extraction of DNA in my research lab. I have colleagues who have worked on the original fossils of marine saurians. I have held and studied the fossils of sharks' teeth, trilobites, brachiopods, echinoderms, bivalves, gastropods, as, due to the geologic history of New Zealand, the vast majority of our fossil material is marine. All our students have access to, and study the original material. You don't know what you're talking about.

Some useful links:

Radiocarbon.org

Let's see if you try to claim something...

Waikato Radiocarbon Dating Laboratory

About radiocarbon dating

This is a well-established and constantly peer-reviewed science.
edit on 4-3-2015 by aorAki because: (no reason given)



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 03:46 PM
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originally posted by: cooperton

originally posted by: OperationBlackRose
Can any date be trusted when using Carbon-Dating?


'Living mollusk shell were carbon dated as being 2,300 years old.' (Science 1963)

'A freshly killed seal was carbon dated as having died 1,300 years ago' (Antarctic Journal 1971)

'Shells from living snails were carbon dated as being 27,000 years old.' (Science 1984)



No way this is true, almighty science is infallible! Sure i never made my own opinion on the topic, or researched carbon-dating, but any enemy of creationism is an unconditional friend of mine. Get out of the dark ages, any science that doesn't agree with mainstream science is not science!


If you actually read the papers you quoted above, you get a little different take on the issue than you get from the OP's post:

Radiocarbon Dating: Fictitious Results with Mollusk Shells (Science, 1963)


Evidence is presented to show that modern mollusk shells from rivers can have anomalous radiocarbon ages, owing mainly to incorporation of inactive (carbon-14-deficient) carbon from humus, probably through the food web, as well as by the pathway of carbon dioxide from humus decay. The resultant effect, in addition to the variable contributions of atmospheric carbon dioxide, fermentative carbon dioxide from bottom muds, and, locally, of carbonate carbon from dissolving limestones, makes the initial carbon-14-activity of ancient fresh-water shell indeterminate, but within limits. Consequent errors of shell radiocarbon dates may be as large as several thousand years for river shells.


Mummified seals southern Victoria Land (Antarctic Journal, 1971)


Radiocarbon analysis of specimens obtained from mummified seals in southern Victoria Land has yeilded ages ranging from 615 to 4,600 years. How-ever, antarctic sea water has significantly lower carbon-14 activity than that accepted as the world standard. Therefore, radiocarbon dating of marine organisms yields apparent ages that are older than true ages, but by an unknown and possibly variable amount. Therefore, the several radiocarbon ages determined for the mummified seal carcasses cannot be accepted as correct.


Major Carbon-14 Deficiency in Modern Snail Shells from Southern Nevada Springs (Science, 1984)


Carbon-14 contents as low as 3.3 ± 0.2 percent modern (apparent age, 27,000 years) measured from the shells of snails Melanoides tuberculatus living in artesian springs in southern Nevada are attributed to fixation of dissolved HCO3- with which the shells are in carbon isotope equilibrium. Recognition of the existence of such extreme deficiencies is necessary so that erroneous ages are not attributed to freshwater biogenic carbonates.


I'm failing to see how research into establishing the limits and possible sources of error in carbon dating is a bad thing. This isn't some example of a failure of science. It's an example of science at its best: the constant process of discovery and refinement.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 03:56 PM
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Sooooooooooo science was wrong back then, but the carbon dating process has been refined and is correct now? Hardy har har. And in another 30 years when we discover these dates are wrong (again) we'll just say we've refined the process and *now* the dates are accurate. And repeat so on forever.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 04:00 PM
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a reply to: jjkenobi

This post shows an undesire to actually learn the science, why it was wrong then and why it was correct now, in attempt to casually dismiss science. Maybe you should study the topic a bit more then come back and see why what you said here is uninformed.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 04:04 PM
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a reply to: jjkenobi

Based on the abstracts and excerpt I posted, I'm failing to see where science was wrong back then. They knew the dates were erroneous. There were coming up with reasons why they were wrong, so future researchers could better use the dating technique.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 05:20 PM
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originally posted by: GetHyped
a reply to: cooperton

Sigh

Let me get a feel for what position you're coming from: how old do you believe the Earth is?


14,280,900,747 years. give or take a couple decades. The word of science is infallible!

But no, all joking aside why does carbon dating say freshly killed animals are over 1000 years? Perhaps, science is fallible



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 07:09 PM
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a reply to: OperationBlackRose




How is it then that when you take one object, let say #0001, and date it using all of the 6 above stated methods of dating, that you will get 6 different dates? That does not make sense. If I use six different rulers, (inch, mm, cubit, span etc.), I will get one measurement when converting it all to one system. I can not get 6 different measurements in inch or feet. That will prove that something does not work.


Its not a question of does or does not work. It is the best we have. it gives a good approximation. When something better comes along we will use it instead.

whats wrong with that..?



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 07:16 PM
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a reply to: OperationBlackRose




You can't get a diploma or degrees if you don't believe in evolution.


I have an an Environmental Science (BSc) with honor and i have never believed in evolution. Far to a simplistic model of nature.

purp.



posted on Mar, 4 2015 @ 07:24 PM
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originally posted by: Krazysh0t
a reply to: jjkenobi

This post shows an undesire to actually learn the science, why it was wrong then and why it was correct now, in attempt to casually dismiss science. Maybe you should study the topic a bit more then come back and see why what you said here is uninformed.


Since you've studied the topic, What has been done since then to improve carbon dating accuracy?




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