The Age of the Earth
"Antiquitas sæculi juventus mundi."
[The age of antiquity is the youth of the world.]
|- Francis Bacon,
The Advancement of Learning 
- The Age of the
- The Earth is accepted by scientists to be around 4.5
billion years old. But how do they know the Earth is this
old? Some of the lines of evidence for an ancient Earth are
- The Geological Time
- Few discussions in geology or evolution can occur
without reference to geologic time. In this article, the
standard time scale used by geologists is depicted and
described. See also Niel Brandt's Evolutionary and Geological
- Radiometric Dating and
the Geological Time Scale
- Radiometric dating and stratigraphic principles are
combined to establish the conventional geological time
scale. Scientists apply these principles to date rocks,
which can then be used to assign ages to fossils.
- Changing Views of the
History of the Earth
- How did we go from thinking Earth was a young planet to
the realization that it is ancient, with a four and a half
billion year history?
- Isochron Dating
- The isochron radiometric dating technique (and related
ones) is widely used in isotope geology, and does not fall
prey to many common creationist criticisms of radiometric
dating. This essay introduces the technique and shows why
it is so reliable.
- An Evaluation of
the ICR Grand Canyon Research Project
- This essay discusses the ICR's Grand Canyon Dating
Project, as proposed and executed by the ICR's Steve
Austin. Austin has obtained some bad Rb-Sr isochron dates,
although there are several serious questions regarding his
according to creationist John Woodmorappe
- John Woodmorappe has examined numerous studies of
radiometric dating in the scientific literature and
concludes that radiometric dating techniques are invalid.
This essay, however, raises serious questions about
- How Good Are
Those Young-Earth Arguments? A Close Look at Dr. Hovind's
List of Young-Earth Arguments and Other Claims
- A detailed debunking of the young-earth arguments used
by Kent Hovind and other young-earth creationists.
- Age of the
Earth: Debate between Chris Stassen and Bob
- This document is the result of an attempted "formal"
Usenet debate, with orderly turns between speakers, length
limits, and a predetermined topic (the age of the earth).
The participants were Bob Bales and Chris Stassen, both
high-profile talk.origins participants at the time of the
- The Decay of
- Light arriving from galaxies billions of light years
away attests to the ancient age of the universe. Some
young-earth creationists have tried to explain this
evidence away by claiming that the speed of light has
- Creation Science and
the Earth's Magnetic Field
- Creationists have long argued that the earth's magnetic
field proves that the earth cannot be more than 10000 years
old. This article looks in great detail at the argument and
thoroughly debunks it.
- Meteorite Dust and
the Age of the Earth
- It is argued that both the Earth and Moon should be
covered with a great layer of space dust if the Earth were
as old as the standard models imply. As usual, creationists
base their argument on faulty data and unwarranted
- The Recession of the
Moon and the Age of the Earth-Moon System
- One of the common arguments made in support of a young
Earth is that the Earth-moon system could not be billions
of years old. This article examines the physics of the
system and shows why the creationists are wrong.
- Polonium Halo
- Scientists examine the claim that creationist Robert
Gentry's polonium haloes are evidence for a young earth.
The evidence suggests that Gentry's argument is
- The Solar FAQ: Solar
Neutrinos and Other Solar Oddities
- Nuclear fusion is the only process reasonably capable
of powering the sun, and one product of this fusion is
invisible particles called 'neutrinos'. But why don't we
observe as many solar neutrinos as theory would
- Debunking Gentry's "New
Redshift Interpretation" Cosmology
- Young-earth creationist Robert Gentry has offered a
theory to replace the standard Big Bang cosmological model
of the universe, but his model is flawed by a number of
deficiencies, errors and inconsistencies.
- Dating with
- A discussion of the methods for determining the ages of
ancient ice cores. Ice cores found in Antarctica date back
about 160,000 years, presenting somewhat of a problem for
young-earth creationists and catastrophists.
Interpretations of Genesis
- Genesis can be interpreted in such a way that it does
not conflict with scientific fact. This short article
describes a few of the more common such
- Supernovae, Supernova
Remnants and Young Earth Creationism
- Young-earth creationists are occasionally heard to
claim that, if the universe is as old as mainstream science
holds it is, we should see far more supernova remnants -
the cinders of exploded stars - than we actually do. This
article discusses supernova physics at length and explains
why these claims are faulty.
- Carbon-14 in Coal
- Some creationists have claimed that anomalous amounts
of radioactive carbon-14 in ancient coal deposits indicates
that standard dating techniques, and by extension possibly
the geologic timescale, are flawed. This essay explains the
real reason C-14 is found in coal.
- Dino-blood and the
Answers in Genesis claims that paleontologist Mary Schweitzer found
"obvious, fresh-looking blood cells" and traces of blood protein
hemoglobin in a Tyrannosaurus rex bone. It further claims that this
demonstrates that the dinosaur could not have lived millions of years
ago. This essay documents that all these claims are absolutely false.
They are the result of selective quoting and misrepresentation of popular
science articles. Also see Dino Blood
Redux on dinosaur blood vessels and cells and
Ancient Molecules and Modern Myths
on osteocalcin claims.
- Young-Earth Creationist Helium
Fallacies Based on Bad Assumptions and Questionable Data
Young-Earth creationists consider the helium diffusion studies of
D. Russell Humphreys
and others to be one of their greatest achievements in arguing for a 6,000
year old Earth. A geologist shows that these studies are extensively
flawed and include: serious miscalculations in their data, sampling the
wrong rock type, failing to eliminate possible
contamination, using equations that are based on
invalid assumptions and relying on questionable data.
- How Old is the Earth:
A Response to "Scientific" Creationism
- A classic and often-referenced 1984 paper by G. Brent Dalrymple. The
paper contains short but accurate expositions of radiometric dating
methods and discussions of creationist criticisms and attempts to date
the Earth as young. It includes material difficult to find elsewhere,
such as the discussion of mixing isochrons and the effect of
- Evidence for the Big Bang
- This article covers the evidence which leads cosmologists to believe the
Big Bang happened, deals with common objections to the theory, and discusses
alternative models and questions that still remain to be answered.
- Determining Distances to Astronomical Objects
- Astronomers can measure distances to objects in the universe whose light
took thousands, millions, or even billions of years for their light to
reach us. This has obvious implications for those who believe the universe
is under ten thousand years old. This article explains how scientists measure
distances to various types of astronomical objects and how young-earth
creationists deal with large astronomical distances.