Comic of carbon dating circular reasoning
An isotope is a particular type of atom of a chemical element, which differs from other isotopes of that element.The different numbers of neutrons possible in the atoms of a given element correspond to the different possible isotopes of that element. Carbon-12 is the isotope of carbon that has 6 neutrons.
One might assume those ages are obtained either directly or indirectly from radioactive dating techniques.That is why carbon-14 is a radioactive isotope-it contains a combination of protons and neutrons in its nucleus that is not stable enough to hold together indefinitely.Eventually, it will undergo a spontaneous nuclear reaction and turn into a stable daughter product – a different isotope, which is not radioactive.But closer inspection reveals that these methods are not truly independent, and the agreement between them is the result of circular reasoning.Dating Rocks and Fossils: Circular Reasoning Because secular scientists believe Earth’s sedimentary rocks were deposited over millions of years, they assume a given rock layer represents a “snapshot” of the history of life at a certain time in the “prehistoric” past.I happened to catch a great tweet by Michael Shermer.
Apparently there was some back and forth about some fossils with Carl Zimmer.
The rocks, however, are assigned geologic ages based on the fossil assemblages which they contain.
The fossils, in turn, are arranged on the basis of their assumed evolutionary relationships.
Each type of radioactive isotope has a half-life, a length of time that it will take for half of the atoms in a sample of that isotope to decay into the stable daughter product.
Physicists have measured the half-lives of most radioactive isotopes to a high level of precision.
There are several groups that meet these criteria; ammonites, trilobites, corals, for example.