Helium in Precambrian Granite?

Research carried out by Dr Baumgardner (Geophysicist) & Dr Humphries (Physicist) has shown that there is enough helium still present in zircon crystals, mined from Precambrian basement granite, that they could not be older than 7680 years.

This flies in the face of the accepted ageing of Precambrian granite (1.5 billion years), so let’s look carefully at the research.

Background Information

When uranium decays to lead, a by-product of this process is the formation of helium, a very light, inert gas, that readily escapes from rock.

Initial Measurements of Age

Upon receiving the zircon crystals, Dr Baumgardner and his team initially measured the amount of uranium and ‘radiogenic lead’ in the crystals, and assuming the decay rate has been constant, calculated that 1.5 billion years must have passed. This agrees with the accepted age of the rock layer the crystals came from.

Amount of Helium

Previous work had been done on similar zircon crystals by Dr Gentry (1982) and he had found that up to 58 percent of the nuclear-decay-generated Helium had not diffused out of the zircons. The percentages decreased with increasing depth and temperature in the borehole. That confirms diffusion had been happening, because the rate of diffusion in any material increases strongly with temperature. Also, the smaller the crystal, the less Helium should be retained. These zircons were both tiny and hot, yet they had retained huge amounts of Helium!

Rate of Helium Diffusion

This was the central area of the research for Baumgardner and Humphries. Samples were sent to one of the world’s foremost experts in Helium diffusion measurements in minerals, so an accurate and independent rate of diffusion could be established.

The team estimated the rate of diffusion they would expect if the zircon crystals were 1) 1.5 billion years old and 2) 6000 years old.

In 2003, results came back from the experimenter, which when compared to the estimated rates, matched very well with the Creation Model. In fact, the rate of Helium diffusion measured was 100,000 higher than the maximum rate the Evolution Model would allow.

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Conclusion

Either the measurement of Uranium/Lead is wrong, or this measurement of Helium Diffusion is wrong, and the issue is in the assumed rates. Has the Uranium always decayed at the same rate? Has the Helium always diffused at the same rate? In one case there has to have been a change in rate. Either there was at some point faster decay which has since slowed, or the Helium diffused much slower and has since sped up.

Established Science has shown for over a 100 years that Helium leaks rapidly out of most materials. This does not seem to allow for a diffusion rate of 100,000 times slower, especially since a key premise of the Evolution Model is uniformity rain process.

The Creation Model, however, has within it the mechanisms to account for increased speed of decay – the huge amount of geological upheaval during both the Creation Week and the Flood.

Further Information

http://creation.com/rate-group-reveals-exciting-breakthroughs

http://www.icr.org/article/new-rate-data-support-young-world/

http://www.icr.org/article/young-helium-diffusion-age-zircons/ (Technical Paper)

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