Potassium argon dating volcanic ash

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Blocks weighing up to 1,000 tonnes were hurled 100 m (330 feet).

However, the most violent explosions occurred on 19 February 1975, accompanied by what eye-witnesses described as atmospheric shock waves.9 Blocks up to 30 m (100 ft) across were catapulted up to 3 km (almost 2 miles). Turbulent avalanches of ash and blocks swept down Ngauruhoe’s sides at about 60 km (35 miles) per hour.10 It is estimated that at least 3.4 million cubic metres (120 million cubic feet) of ash and blocks were ejected in 7 hours.11up If any of these assumptions are violated, then the technique fails and any “dates” are false.

Standing roughly in the centre of New Zealand’s North Island, Mt Ngauruhoe is New Zealand’s newest volcano and one of the most active (Figures 1 and 2).

It is not as well publicized as its larger close neighbour MT Ruapehu, which has erupted briefly several times in the last five years.

Following death, however, no new carbon is consumed.

Progressively through time, the carbon-14 atoms decay and once again become nitrogen-14.

Cannon-like, highly explosive eruptions in January and March 1974 threw out large quantities of ash as a column into the atmosphere, and as avalanches flowing down the cone’s sides.

Argon gas, brought up from deep inside the earth within the molten rock, was already present in the lavas when they cooled.

We know the true ages of the rocks because they were observed to form less than 50 years ago.

Geochron is a respected commercial laboratory, the K–Ar lab manager having a Ph. However, the samples were described as probably young with very little argon in them so as to ensure extra care was taken during the analytical work. This violates assumption (1) of radioactive dating, and so the K–Ar method fails the test.

This same failure is also known to occur in many other rocks, including both recent volcanics18and ancient crustal rocks.19 The radioactive potassium-argon dating method has been demonstrated to fail on 1949, 1954, and 1975 lava flows at Mt Ngauruhoe, New Zealand, in spite of the quality of the laboratory’s K–Ar analytical work.

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