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The bell curve of probable age starts at about 1.8 billion years, peaks at 2.4 billion, and dips back to the baseline at 3 billion.
So whether you call it an exact science or not is a matter of linguistics.
There are two possible reasons that the old dates were returned.
The first has to do with the reason Geocron's equipment was considered useful only for high concentrations of argon.
In addition, the initial amount of K that you started with is never measured directly; instead, it is assumed to always be .0117% of the total potassium present, which is the known distribution in nature.Young Earthers point to an infamous dating error as evidence that the Earth is only as old as the Bible says.by Brian Dunning Filed under General Science, Natural History, Religion Skeptoid Podcast #146 March 24, 2009 Podcast transcript Today we're going to point our skeptical eye at one of the key players in the debate between geologists and Young Earthers over the age of the Earth. Steven Austin took a sample of dacite from the new lava dome inside Mount St. The dacite sample was known to have been formed from a 1986 magma flow, and so its actual age was an established fact. Austin submitted the sample for radiometric dating to an independent laboratory in Cambridge, Massachusetts.And so, by any standard, it was scientifically meaningless for Dr.Austin to apply Geocron's potassium-argon dating to his sample of dacite known to be only six years old. If there wasn't yet enough argon in the rock to be detectable, and the equipment that was used was not sensitive enough to detect any argon, how was enough argon found that such old results were returned?
But for a sample with little or no argon, it would produce a falsely old result. The papers all go into great detail describing the various ways that argon-containing compounds can be incorporated into magma.