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 Decay rates changing?
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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 05/08/2011 :  20:54:44  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
You just know that outfits like AIG will be all over this one.


This is exactly what has been noticed in recent years; the decay rates of radioactive elements are changing. This is especially mysterious as we are talking about elements with "constant" decay rates -- these values aren't supposed to change. School textbooks teach us this from an early age.


But as you can see, carbon dating makes one huge assumption: radioactive decay rates remain constant and always have been constant. If this new finding is proven to be correct, even if the impact is small, it will throw the science community into a spin.


Off to see what they have to say...

>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.

Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26009 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  04:54:24   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message  Reply with Quote
For some reason, Stanford reported on (and Discover picked up on) this story last August (your link in nine months old, Ig), when one of the first papers on this subject was published two years before then.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
Evidently, I rock!
Why not question something for a change?
Visit Dave's Psoriasis Info, too.
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the_ignored
SFN Addict

2557 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  06:31:40   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send the_ignored a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Whoops

>From: enuffenuff@fastmail.fm
(excerpt follows):
> I'm looking to teach these two bastards a lesson they'll never forget.
> Personal visit by mates of mine. No violence, just a wee little chat.
>
> **** has also committed more crimes than you can count with his
> incitement of hatred against a religion. That law came in about 2007
> much to ****'s ignorance. That is fact and his writing will become well
> know as well as him becoming a publicly known icon of hatred.
>
> Good luck with that fuckwit. And Reynold, fucking run, and don't stop.
> Disappear would be best as it was you who dared to attack me on my
> illness knowing nothing of the cause. You disgust me and you are top of
> the list boy. Again, no violence. Just regular reminders of who's there
> and visits to see you are behaving. Nothing scary in reality. But I'd
> still disappear if I was you.

What brought that on? this. Original posting here.

Another example of this guy's lunacy here.
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sailingsoul
SFN Addict

2830 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  10:51:31   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sailingsoul a Private Message  Reply with Quote
After I read this piece I'm thinking, no one has claimed to understand everything about matter, yet. So why is this a surprise given there are unknowns about the nature of matter.
Take hydrogen, are all atoms identical by definition? I was told or lead to believe so. Given an amount of radioactive material what determines which half of it's atoms will decay vs which half will not, is this the mystery? If they are identical wouldn't they decay in sync? Possibly if they are created at the same instant then maybe they would. Remember all heavy matter is created in stars. IE, Stars take FOUR hydrogen atoms, and create a single helium atom and so on. The largest stars will fuse all kinds of elements. Radioactive atoms being created at different times might explain this. I probably missing something here, no doubt. SS

There are only two types of religious people, the deceivers and the deceived. SS
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On fire for Christ
SFN Regular

Saudi Arabia
1266 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  11:41:03   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send On fire for Christ a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Given an amount of radioactive material what determines which half of it's atoms will decay vs which half will not, is this the mystery?


Without reading anything I'm guessing this is the mystery:
whether the atom will decay or not is defined by a probability. We thought this was a fixed value, but apparently it isn't.

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sailingsoul
SFN Addict

2830 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  12:07:04   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sailingsoul a Private Message  Reply with Quote
That was what I tried to point out OFFC. I tried to say if all heavier atoms where created at the same time and the decay at the same rate, then they would decay at the same time but because upon creation, in a star, the material is created over time and individual atoms are created at different times. That would have differely atoms decaying at different times after their creation. SS

There are only two types of religious people, the deceivers and the deceived. SS
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On fire for Christ
SFN Regular

Saudi Arabia
1266 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  12:15:59   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send On fire for Christ a Private Message  Reply with Quote
I tried to say if all heavier atoms where created at the same time and the decay at the same rate, then they would decay at the same time


No they wouldn't because they do not have a fixed expiry date, they decay based on a probability.

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sailingsoul
SFN Addict

2830 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  13:59:56   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send sailingsoul a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Oh yeah! Well maybe they got that wrong. Just kidding. ;) I get it. SS

There are only two types of religious people, the deceivers and the deceived. SS
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9677 Posts

Posted - 05/09/2011 :  17:56:58   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message  Reply with Quote
This is exactly what has been noticed in recent years; the decay rates of radioactive elements are changing. This is especially mysterious as we are talking about elements with "constant" decay rates -- these values aren't supposed to change. School textbooks teach us this from an early age.
The difference in decay-rate is minuscule. For all practical purposes, it is constant. The many measurements we have on carbon and other important elements were made so many times, and over such a long period of time that seasonal variations averages out. So the numbers we have don't differ enough to have any practical impact.

And indeed, if the variations were significant, the would wouldn't look like it does today: If decay-rates varied enough, seasonally, then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own and blow, or they wouldn't go off even if triggered. Or the yield would swing wildly between summer and winter.
Nuclear power-plants would have to change their control-rods differently depending on seasonal changes...


But as you can see, carbon dating makes one huge assumption: radioactive decay rates remain constant and always have been constant. If this new finding is proven to be correct, even if the impact is small, it will throw the science community into a spin.

We'll at least see ecstatic verbal ejaculations from the AiG-crowd, and Discovery Institute. But as usual, anything they write will be wildly exaggerated and taken out of context.



Edited: spelling

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
Edited by - Dr. Mabuse on 05/10/2011 08:58:19
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  10:28:06   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own

Well, no. Nuclear bombs all use some mechanism to bring two small masses of fissionable material together, rapidly, to obtain a critical mass. The more advanced ones have other things to improve the efficiency of the reaction and to ensure that it starts.

Decay of fissionable mass will never result in a critical mass of fissionable material.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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BigPapaSmurf
SFN Die Hard

3192 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  11:48:49   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send BigPapaSmurf a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dude

then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own

Well, no. Nuclear bombs all use some mechanism to bring two small masses of fissionable material together, rapidly, to obtain a critical mass. The more advanced ones have other things to improve the efficiency of the reaction and to ensure that it starts.

Decay of fissionable mass will never result in a critical mass of fissionable material.




Don't forget dude some nuke designs are the implosion type with only a single mass...these could be set off by a magic MASSIVE increase in the fission decay rate.

"...things I have neither seen nor experienced nor heard tell of from anybody else; things, what is more, that do not in fact exist and could not ever exist at all. So my readers must not believe a word I say." -Lucian on his book True History

"...They accept such things on faith alone, without any evidence. So if a fraudulent and cunning person who knows how to take advantage of a situation comes among them, he can make himself rich in a short time." -Lucian critical of early Christians c.166 AD From his book, De Morte Peregrini
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  12:40:10   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by BigPapaSmurf

Originally posted by Dude

then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own

Well, no. Nuclear bombs all use some mechanism to bring two small masses of fissionable material together, rapidly, to obtain a critical mass. The more advanced ones have other things to improve the efficiency of the reaction and to ensure that it starts.

Decay of fissionable mass will never result in a critical mass of fissionable material.




Don't forget dude some nuke designs are the implosion type with only a single mass...these could be set off by a magic MASSIVE increase in the fission decay rate.


Implosion type nuclear weapons use a sub-critical mass of Pu239. Pu239 decays into several possible isotopes of uranium. The implosion increases the density, which lowers the mass threshold for criticality.

Pu239 has a critical mass at it's normal density of ~10kg, U235 (the weaponized isotope of uranium) has a critical mass, at it's normal density, of 52kg, and U233 is 15kg. Pu239 does decay into U235, but this does not involve a gain of mass. 10kg of Plutonium can't become 52kg (or even 15kg, but that doesn't matter because pu239 does not decay into U233) of Uranium via decay.

Uranium's decay products do not include Plutonium or any other element or isotope that has a critical mass less than that of Uranium.

So I'm going with no possibility of nuclear warheads achieving critical mass as a result of nuclear decay.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
Edited by - Dude on 05/10/2011 12:49:47
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  12:52:41   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Just to add... Uranium 235 and 233 both decay into different isotopes of Thorium, and no isotope of Thorium has a critical mass. Doesn't go boom.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9677 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  13:50:47   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dude

then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own

Well, no.

Yes, they will have to, if the decay-rates changed as much as YEC-Fundies will have them do in order to invalidate carbon-dating past 4000BCE.

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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Dude
SFN Die Hard

USA
6891 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  14:15:02   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send Dude a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dr. Mabuse

Originally posted by Dude

then nukes could spontaneously reach critical mass on their own

Well, no.

Yes, they will have to, if the decay-rates changed as much as YEC-Fundies will have them do in order to invalidate carbon-dating past 4000BCE.


Apparently one of us doesn't understand some vital part of the nuclear decay process. None of the known decay procucts of Uranium 235/233 are capable of exploding at any mass, and the decay products of Plutonium capable of critical mass detonation only if the decay process adds mass.

I am unaware of any decay product that is more massive than the original isotope.

So regardless of what the decay rate is, unless you find a way to add mass via emission of ionizing radiation, nukes will never spontaneously hit critical mass as a result of decay.

I will state that my knowledge here is just enough to understand the basics, but I am reasonably sure I didn't miss the lecture that included gain of mass via decay.


Ignorance is preferable to error; and he is less remote from the truth who believes nothing, than he who believes what is wrong.
-- Thomas Jefferson

"god :: the last refuge of a man with no answers and no argument." - G. Carlin

Hope, n.
The handmaiden of desperation; the opiate of despair; the illegible signpost on the road to perdition. ~~ da filth
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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9677 Posts

Posted - 05/10/2011 :  14:17:36   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message  Reply with Quote
Originally posted by Dude

Just to add... Uranium 235 and 233 both decay into different isotopes of Thorium, and no isotope of Thorium has a critical mass. Doesn't go boom.

My point is that quantum mechanical constants that control decay also affects which configurations of atomic nucleus might spontaneously undergo fission, and what end products you get from it. With changed constants, spontaneous fission of Thorium, or U238 might happen, just as well as the possibility of U238 possibly becoming stable. The different critical masses of various elements would change, in some cases drastically.

Dr. Mabuse - "When the going gets tough, the tough get Duct-tape..."
Dr. Mabuse whisper.mp3

"Equivocation is not just a job, for a creationist it's a way of life..." Dr. Mabuse

Support American Troops in Iraq:
Send them unarmed civilians for target practice..
Collateralmurder.
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