Rather, there was likely to be a single, unifying answer that concerned the nuclear decay processes themselves.Since, from the eyewitness testimony of God's Word, the billions of years that such vast amounts of radioactive processes would normally suggest had not taken place, it was clear that the assumption of a constant slow decay process was wrong (Wieland 2003).They called the study the RATE (Radioisotopes and the Age of the Earth) project.Upon completion of the eight-year investigation, the team announced the results at a conference in 2005.Over 100 years ago, scientists discovered radioactivity and began realizing the potential of dating different objects using radioactive materials contained within them.They have since developed numerous techniques that utilize a suite of radioisotopes to date and crosscheck those dates.The conclusions of the Radioisotopes and the Age of The Earth (RATE) Project as summarized above signify an important shift in argumentation by many of the major institutions of young-Earth creationism such as Answers in Genesis and the Institute for Creation Research.
The supposed "breakthroughs" have to do with discovery of an apparent overabundance of helium in certain zircon samples and the detection of carbon-14 (14C) in diamond.
Through the life of the organism, the proportion of C-14 to C-12 reaches the same proportion as in the rest of the environment.
When the organism dies, however, it ceases to incorporate carbon into its body.
Today, scientists attempt to determine the age of dead organisms by measuring the ratio of C-12 to C-14, by comparing it to an assumed but unobserved initial ratio, and determining how long it would take to get from the assumed but unobserved initial ratio at an assumed but unobserved rate of decay.
Here are the key assumptions: There is one fact that makes it highly unreasonable to believe that the proportion of C-14 to C-12 was the same in the past as it has been in recent history: It is not in equilibrium.C-12 is stable, meaning it does not decay into other elements over time. It is formed when cosmic radiation strikes N-14 (Nitrogen), converting it into C-14, and it decays back into N-14, with a half-life of 5730 years, meaning that for any sample of C-14, half of it will decay back into N-14 every 5730 years.