Physics

Carbon 14 Dating of Fossils

June, 2017

Organic matter in the fossil record generally dates by carbon 14 (C14) dating to about 20,000 to 40,000 years. Other radioactive dating methods such as potassium/argon (K/Ar), rubidium/strontium (Rb/Sr), uranium/lead (U/Pb), thorium/lead (Th/Pb) and others that are based on decay of longer-lived isotopes often give ages in the millions or hundreds of millions of years for these fossils. Why is this? Why are the dates so different?

Many creationists believe that radioactive decay was faster in the past. However, in this talk I want to concentrate on reasons to believe the C14 dates are more accurate and that they give evidence that all life on earth is very young. If decay rates were faster in the past, then even the C14 dates could be too old.

How Carbon 14 Is Produced and Decays

Carbon 14 is an isotope of carbon with two extra neutrons in the nucleus. It is produced in the upper atmosphere. The rate at which this happens varies to some extent. Perhaps there was less C14 produced in the past, which would imply that even the relatively young C14 dates are too old.

Current Science and Creation

May, 2017

This month I report on various science news stories and articles from the secular and creationist literature from over the past few years. The topics will include origin of life research, the discovery of nearby earth-sized planets, the discovery of gravity waves, the competition between dark matter and Modified Newtonian Dynamics (MOND) for explaining astronomical observations, new evidence for a galactocentric universe, the use of DNA for computer memory, a conference on the historicity of Adam, and an upcoming total solar eclipse which will soon be visible near you.

Origin of Life

The origin of life—the transition from chemistry to the first self-replicating life form—has remained an enigma for materialists. There are a world of difficulties. The simplest living thing we are aware of already has fully functional DNA, RNA, proteins, various molecular machines such as ribosomes, enzymes, etc. The DNA/RNA/protein system in extant cells is irreducibly complex. The DNA has the information for building proteins. Proteins convert the information in DNA into an RNA version that is then read by a molecular machine (ribosome) consisting of unique RNA and proteins. The information read from the RNA is translated into a protein. Hence one needs proteins to read DNA, DNA to provide the blueprints for proteins, and RNA to shuttle information around. Remove any piece, and the system does not work.

The Big Stretch - Part 2 - Evidence

February, 2017

The Twin Jet Nebula  ESA/Hubble [CC BY 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

In a previous article, The Big Stretch - Part 1, http://tasc-creationscience.org/article/big-stretch-1, a cosmological model was introduced, the Setterfield Plasma-ZPE model.

There have been various arguments raised against this model. In this article, we will examine some of those arguments, to try to determine if they are valid or not. 

We will start with a brief overview of the model; for more details, refer to The Big Stretch - Part 1 or to www.setterfield.org.

A Review and Response to the Book "The Grand Design" by Stephen Hawking

May, 2011

Stephen Hawking

Stephen Hawking is Professor of mathematics at Cambridge University where he held the Lucasian Chair at Cambridge for 30 years. He is author of the best-selling book A Brief History of Time. Hawking suffers from ALS. His most recent book, The Grand Design, was published in 2010 by Bantam Books.

In The Grand Design Hawking attempts to show metaphysical naturalism is supported by science. He claims the fine tuning of physics in our universe is not hard to explain because there are at least 100500 universes, according to some theories, each with its own unique set of physical laws and constants—we just happen to be living in one of the few universes with the right laws and constants that allow us to exist. The book develops this argument by retracing the history of physics. Attempts to marry quantum mechanics with relativity have led to theories that imply the universe created itself, says Hawking.

Consciousness: Marvel of the Mind

April, 2002

The bodies of living things are what evolution tries to explain. But what about behavior? Within the evolutionary model, the only possibility is that behavior results from the chemicals, cells, and components of the organism's body. And what about soul? Spirit? Mind? Likewise, these things are viewed in evolution, if they are dealt with at all and not simply ignored, as simply results of chemical or other natural processes in a body.

Is there any evidence for anything beyond the body? Something involved in the operation of our minds? Something that transcends the simple mechanics and natural forces involved in the matter composing our bodies? If so, then this would be something unaccounted for by evolution. If evolution is true, then evolution must have given rise to consciousness. But, first, what is consciousness?

One view that we could take concerning consciousness is that consciousness, or mind, is nothing more than chemical reactions occurring among brain cells. The brain would be analogous to a computer. However, there is a theory that human consciousness is qualitatively different from what computers do. According to this view, something is happening in consciousness that is beyond the ability of science to explain. In particular, this view holds that it is beyond the ability of physics to explain consciousness.

Rare Earth

March, 2004

It is interesting to put together all the data. Isaiah 28 mentions learning, teaching, doctrine and knowledge. It mentions line on line, here a little and there a little, and precept on precept. This is how we come to truth in mathematics—in a proof of a theorem, we see line upon line and concept used to prove another concept. Math builds on itself.

For example, we generally learn to crawl before we learn to walk. And, it is often necessary to put all the relevant information together to come up with the best interpretation. We have all heard of the blind men who examined the elephant. Alone, in isolation, they came to erroneous conclusions. This is because they had only a part of the data. Missing information was the problem. One thought the elephant was like a fan, because he had examined the ear. Another, however, who had examined (by touch—remember, these were all blind men) the elephant's leg, said the elephant was like a tree. Well, the part of the elephant that each man examined was as he found it, but that was not all there was to the elephant.

It does seem that we have been jumping to conclusions a bit too quickly in some areas, and in evolution in particular. For example, some scientists have said that dinosaurs evolved from birds, and others that birds evolved from dinosaurs. One must wonder, if there is room for such difference of opinion among scientists, whether the evidence is actually all that clear-cut and conclusive, after all.

A Biblical and Scientific Analysis of the Big Bang

February, 2007

The Big Bang is defined today as, everything we see in the Universe today having evolved out of a random 1 explosion of matter 2 that took place between 10 and 20 billion years ago. But the author of this paper believes the Big Bang is not a theory. Why? Because a theory is defined as, a scientific hypothesis that survives experimental testing. Then, is the Big Bang a hypothesis? No. A hypothesis is defined as, a testable statement about the natural world. Then what is the Big Bang? It is merely an idea, defined as, a personal view or estimate.

COBE Image

NASA’s view of the Universe through liquid helium COBE’s eyes. Colors indicate warmer (red) and cooler (blue) spots. The image is a combination of diffuse infrared, far-infrared and microwave frequencies.

History of the Big Bang

Let’s look at the history of the Big Bang. Between 1927 and 1933, the idea of the universe beginning with an explosion was first proposed, from Einstein’s equations, though Einstein [at that time] and others believed in a steady state model of the universe. The idea would be called the Big Bang, a sarcastic term, in 1944.

Evidence for Creation from Astronomy and Physics

October, 2002

For the invisible things of him from the creation of the world are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even his eternal power and Godhead; so that they are without excuse: Romans 1:20 (KJV)

The data of modern astronomy and physics provide compelling evidence for design and creation in nature. By all appearances, the universe had a beginning and has been finely tuned for life as we know it. The finite history of the universe is established by the First and Second Laws of Thermodynamics and strongly suggested by the cosmic expansion and red shift of galaxies. The fine-tuning is manifest in the four fundamental forces of nature, the low entropy of the universe, the quantized red shift of galaxies, the lack of antimatter, several features of the earth and solar system, the chemical properties of the elements, and the properties of water.

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