Posted by: Rob Lester | September 15, 2010

Cavitation may affect decay rates

A study by Fabio Cardone of the Institute per lo Studio dei Materiali Nanostrutturati in Rome (not a creationist organization) and colleagues have shown a dramatic increase – by a factor of 10,000 – in the decay rate of thorium-228 in water as a result of ultrasonic cavitation. Cavitation is when air bubbles form in moving water and collapse producing shockwaves.  We can’t get too excited by one preliminary study, but if true, this verifies what young-earth creationists have said about inaccuracy of radiometric dating all along.  One of the premier evidences given for the multi-billion-year age of the earth is radiometric dating (carbon-14, potassium-argon, rubidium-strontium, uranium-thorium). The common illustration is that of a candle.  We know how fast the wax melts in an hour, therefore we measure how much wax is left to tell us how long it has been burning.  Geologists know the rate of radioactive decay so they measure how much is left in the material. The problem is, what if while the scientist wasn’t looking someone came in and blew the candle out for a couple of hours and then relit it? What if someone turned up the thermostat and made the wax softer so that it melted more rapidly?  There is no scientific evidence of what the atmosphere or radioactive levels were millions of years ago. No one was there to observe and measure the conditions. Decay rates cannot be proven to have remained constant since creation.  Many examples have been documented where the numbers did not match what was expected. Dates determined by radiometric dating methods which are “off” of what Darwinists expected often results in those dates not being publicized and written off as deviations or obvious errors. Sounds like cherry-picking to me. This new study, if true, happens to fit perfectly with a global catastrophic flood which would cause massive cavitation. If cavitation affects one method of radiometric dating, there is nothing preventing it from tainting other methods as well. Old-earth Darwinism scratches its head over these new findings but the Bible remains untroubled.    

F Cardone, R Mignani and A Petrucci 2009 Phys. Lett. A 373 1956.

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