Problem of carbon dating buddhist online dating uk
So geologists have assumed these radioactive decay rates have been constant for billions of years.However, this is an enormous extrapolation of seven orders of magnitude back through immense spans of unobserved time without any concrete proof that such an extrapolation is credible.Yet lava flows that have occurred in the present have been tested soon after they erupted, and they invariably contained much more argon-40 than expected.1 For example, when a sample of the lava in the Mt. Helens crater (that had been observed to form and cool in 1986) ( age yield incorrect old potassium-argon ages due to the extra argon-40 that they inherited from the erupting volcanoes, then ancient lava flows of unknown ages could likewise have inherited extra argon-40 and yield excessively old ages.There are similar problems with the other radioactive “clocks.” For example, consider the dating of Grand Canyon’s basalts (rocks formed by lava cooling at the earth’s surface).
Obviously, these eruptions took place very recently, after the Canyon’s layers were deposited ().
Part 2 explains how scientists run into problems when they make assumptions about what happened .
An hourglass is a helpful analogy to explain how geologists calculate the ages of rocks.
This is the same age that we get for the basalt layers deep below the walls of the eastern Grand Canyon.4 How could both lavas—one at the top and one at the bottom of the Canyon—be the same age based on these parent and daughter isotopes?
One solution is that both the recent and early lava flows inherited the same rubidium-strontium chemistry—not age—from the same source, deep in the earth’s upper mantle.