Talk:Radiohalo

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What are the sources for this page? As of 7 Feb 2005 I see none. This is especially troublesome consider duplicate pages elsewhere on the web (i.e. http://www.freetemplate.ws/ra/radiohalo.html ). Could someone add sources here?

Bias[edit]

"However, Lorence G. Collins, J. Richard Wakefield and others have repeatedly and soundly rebutted the radiohalo evidence for a young earth in peer-reviewed publications." How do you qualify (or quantify) "soundly rebutted"? Isn't that a value statement of opinion? Also, there is no reference or futher statement regarding this. Justin Custer 08:47, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

Also, though Gentry's work on radiohalos tends to support a young earth hypothesis, in is not necessarily ONLY about that hypothesis. Should this article, to be more encyclopedic, be limited to the discussion of the radiohalos and only mention the relation to the young earth hypothesis? Justin Custer 08:52, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

There are Ten Scientific Papers written by Robert V. Gentry that have been censored by the Los Alamos National Laboratory arXiv staff (now at Cornell Univ), according to Robert V. Gentry. Mr. Gentry states his scientific conclusions have not had the chance to have a proper scientific evaluation do to the outright rejection initially made by the LANL. If the conclusions made are reasonable, holding to the rigors of scientific scrutiny, the Big-Bang Theory will be proved false. Considering the social and financial ramifications this conclusion would have, it is plausible that the Scientific Community is in full support of any censorship of Mr. Gentry's findings. The alleged findings of Robert V. Gentry and report of censorship can be fond at http://www.orionfdn.org/index.htm. [User:James Phelps 05:33, 26 May 2011] — Preceding unsigned comment added by Jjammin1812 (talkcontribs)

(i) This issue is already discussed in Robert V. Gentry and arXiv#Peer review. (ii) www.orionfdn.org is not even close to being a reliable source. (iii) Gentry's "unduly self-serving" statements about third parties are not usable per WP:ABOUTSELF. HrafnTalkStalk(P) 06:31, 27 May 2011 (UTC)
Ugh. This is not bias. When a conclusion has been properly reached via the Scientific Method, the use of subjective adjectives like "soundly" is perfectly valid. In this case, the word "soundly" is synonymous with completely and thoroughly. In other words, the young earth "evidence" has been completely and thoroughly rebutted. This is a valid statement of verifiable fact because even the most strict application of the word "soundly" would still apply given the sheer volume of meticulously analyzed and compiled data on the subject.
This article may be biased in favor of objective science, but I think that would apply to Wikipedia as a whole-- or any other credible encyclopedia, for that matter. Creationists who try to "dabble" in science often fail to understand that conclusions can be rendered and, when sufficiently reproduced, cited as fact; even if there may still be detractors. The Scientific Method cannot function without some degree of subjectivity, which is why consensus and replication by other scientists are vital components. If enough credible scientists (and yes, even "enough" is a subjective term) can independently confirm a conclusion, then it can be reasoned that many different interpretations of the subjective elements all yielded the same result, thus creating a probability that curves infinitely close to 100% as the consensus grows. The fact that there are still detractors does not in and of itself mean that the subject is still "undecided."
Heh I just noticed how old that comment is. Oh, well. I needed to say it. This conspiracy theory nonsense about the "scientific community" censoring this Gentry guy-- the evidence being that he said so-- deserves to be rebuffed. Sir kris (talk) 06:11, 2 December 2012 (UTC)

Sources[edit]

I added several sources to the acticle as well as made some clarifications and additions. I hope this provides a more thorough and comprehensive reference.

Link to current sources, needed revisions[edit]

The sources for the article are not the most recent, but more important ignore some of the sources that call Gentry's work into question. http://www.talkorigins.org/faqs/po-halos/gentry.html provides a current article with citations to recent Gentry work as well as links to older and current articles that detail attempts to reproduce his observations and explain radiohalos.

The term is certainly better than what seems to be more common, po halos or polonuim halos. It appears that the halos are caused by the alpha decay of uranium, thorium, radium, radon, and polonuim. The element in the chain that Gentry pointedly ignores, even after contemporary scientists pointed to radon as the key to understanding the different halos seen.

In addition to the creationist controversy, the initial attempt to use the halos for geodating and the earlier discovery should be noted. I think this captures my current thoughts on this article. Now it requires figuring out how to organize the article and the emphasis on each point, especially in light of the controversy this purports to support. Mulp 16:47, 28 August 2005 (UTC)

Well, the halos are not caused by any of those elements. You can measure the rings to find which elements actually caused the halos. Anyway, I suggest that you reference to a peer-reviewed journal rather a website.EMSPhydeaux 17:56, 9 October 2007 (UTC)
I'm confused by your statement, "Well, the halos are not caused by any of those elements. You can measure the rings to find which elements actually caused the halos." Could you please clarify, EMSPhydeaux? Thank you. Justin Custer 08:55, 12 November 2007 (UTC)
Sorry that I didn't get back to you sooner. Each element creates a different sized ring depending upon the radioactive element, because each radioactive element can shot out the alpha particles, which create the rings, to different distances (basically). Anyway, we know the size of the rings caused by uranium, thorium, radium, radon, and polonium. So, if we simply measure the size of the rings, we can tell that the element that caused the polonium-218 ring was polonium-218. Also, the idea that we cannot tell the difference between radon-222 and polonium-210 is incorrect. The difference has been shown, and the results published in peer-reviewed journals. So I'll be sure to correct the paper. EMSPhydeaux (talk) 20:52, 29 January 2008 (UTC)
"Also, the idea that we cannot tell the difference between radon-222 and polonium-210 is incorrect. The difference has been shown, and the results published in peer-reviewed journals."
Eh? Your basis for this, please? I thought this was the key point: that Radon222's and Polonium210's alpha decay particles have energies (5.486MeV and 5.305MeV respectively) that are so similar as to make the diameter of their rings - and thus the identity of their originator - indistinguishable.
There may be ways to 'tell the difference', but do they work on archaic remnants in ancient crystal lattices, where there's nothing left but the ring damage? Serious question.
If not, then the hypothesis that the rings are caused by radon atoms - inert, monatomic and subject to gas pressure laws - migrating through crystal defects makes much more sense than that the polonium magically appeared in place by fiat of a creator deity. --Cdavis999 (talk) 10:51, 9 May 2008 (UTC)
They are not indistinguishable. That's just another myth that naturally comes when an article uses rebutted work for it's source. Here is a link to the Science article: http://www.halos.com/reports/science-1974-perspective.htm EMSPhydeaux (talk) 14:42, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

The elements mentioned in the link [1] are Polonium, Radium, Thorium, and Radon (possibly others). It seems OK to me to cite that link, because its bibliography refers to many published papers and books. The Proceedings of the Royal Society are prestigious, and there are several citations to Science and at least one to an education journal. After all, if some person with a "cause" (such as young Earth, or maybe next time that Egyptian mummies were planted by extraterrestrials) you can't expect serious people to try to publish rebuttals in refereed works. We are luck that Thomas Baillieul managed to find serious refutations in prestigious journals and in apparently widely used textbooks. Of course, links can go away, so if somebody wants to copy the references into Wikipedia - go for it. Carrionluggage 23:56, 12 November 2007 (UTC)

The problem I have with the article is that it references papers which have been soundly rebutted in the peer-reviewed journals. If we actually referenced the peer-reviewed journals we would not have this problem of unverified information, but then again you would also find that all the peer-reviewed articles have been soundly rebutted and you couldn't make your case against the truth. EMSPhydeaux (talk) 14:42, 8 September 2008 (UTC)

Necessary to explain Creationist connection[edit]

Previous deletion leaves the reader less informed as to why this rambling "debate" goes on and on. Gentry was reduced to letters-to-the-editor in Physics Today in the 1960's. His motive was then clear. He wanted to prove the Earth was young. Others (see main article) have answered him fully. The subject is virtually dead except that Creationists have singled it out for revival.Carrionluggage (talk) 21:14, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

The subject may be dead in serious science discussion, but so is any debate over the fact of evolution - in such circles.
In the real world, alas, there are huge numbers of uninformed folk who actively distrust any science that contradicts their religious beliefs, and a host of organisations - some ignorant; some downright wicked - that have powerful platforms to spread their nonsense. They push the 'Po-Halo controversy', and similar discredited science, to bolster that nonsense. --Cdavis999 (talk) 11:04, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

That may be so. Nevertheless, references belong at the end of the article, and the comment 'an example of creationist pseudoscience' is editorializing, and shows bias. This is an encyclopedia, not a soap box.

The statement "The claims are contested by the mainstream scientific community" is enough for paragraph 1.

Deipnosopher (talk) 21:36, 5 March 2008 (UTC)

Is true NPOV possible, especially in subjects like this? Would a similar subject in which an apparently scholarly article proposed evidence for the existence of fairies, say, be given immunity from characterisation as pseudoscience?
ISTM that if an encyclopaedia allows discussion of religion-related matters (including Creationism and its better-dressed cousin ID) as anything other than mythology, then it has already stepped over a neutrality boundary, by giving credence to subjects that have been scientifically and rationally established not to be factual. --Cdavis999 (talk) 11:21, 9 May 2008 (UTC)

Anomalous Radiohalos[edit]

I am thinking about changing the article to include the person who originally thought of the idea of SHE in relation to radio halos back in 1973. The term "anomalous radiohalos" is also a little vague. If I include the original source of this idea I think it would help everyone to understand the subject better, and the article the author published is also viewable for free online which is always nice. If there are any objections let me know here. EMSPhydeaux (talk) 14:58, 8 September 2008 (UTC)


creationist "pseudoscience"[edit]

Hmm...now here is a perfect example of an ad hominem attack being accepted as a scientific refutation of the evidence. Interesting, very interesting. Whenever I find such attacks to be the first and foremost in the line of debate, I always get the feeling that there must be some good science at the heart of the issue being attacked by this logical fallacy, as any real argument would be made directly at the science and the evidence.BreshiBaraElohim (talk) 11:09, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

Hmm...Someone blanked out my one small sentence that suggested the evidence should speak for itself. Is the evidence really that good? I feel like the thought police are going to come knocking on my door next.BreshiBaraElohim (talk) 12:04, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

It was repetition: the previous but one sentence says "claims of creationist Robert V. Gentry[1] that radiohalos in biotite are evidence for a young earth (Gentry 1992)" and the deleted sentence said "let the science speak for itself" - which is the same thing and adds nothing to the more specific earlier sentence. Adding a citation to the earlier sentence is helpful Babakathy (talk) 12:32, 18 October 2008 (UTC)
LOL, nice sidestep. Its really not that big of an issue, in fact, I kind of like the fact that those of us who are still thinking outside the status quo are referred to negatively by the rest of the "scientific" community; It puts us right along side Nikola Tesla, Albert Einstein, and Galileo--an honor we have not yet earned.BreshiBaraElohim (talk) 09:29, 19 October 2008 (UTC)
Do yourself and everyone else a favour by actually reading the article. The case you are trying to make is made clearly in the last-but-one sentence. Your sentence simply said the same thing for a second time. Also, please read some of the links on radiohalos. Or links I showed you at Talk:Radiometric_dating. For example this explains that the halos can be caused by decay of U to Ra to Po and not represent original Po in the rock. In such cases there is nothing surprising about them. Direct quote In uranium ore-fields the extra uranium provides an abundant source of inert radon gas; and it is this gas that diffuses in ambient fluids so that incipient biotite and fluorite crystallization is exposed to it. Radon (222Rn) decays and Po isotopes nucleate in the rapidly growing biotite (and fluorite) crystals whence they are positioned to produce the Po halos.Babakathy (talk) 15:03, 19 October 2008 (UTC)

Searches[edit]

Find sources: "Radiohalo" – books · scholar · JSTOR · free images

Reference removed[edit]

I removed this link as a reference because it lacked proper authorship details and didn't follow the Harvard citation convention of the rest of the article. If someone can manage to figure out who wrote this and where it was published, it might be suitable as a reference. It doesn't seem necessary for the statement it was used to support: we have Gentry's book for that. siℓℓy rabbit (talk) 13:35, 18 October 2008 (UTC)

That is Gentry's website. Other than that I don't know the context it was used in nor the publishing information.

External links POV[edit]

Under "External Links", an anonymous editor changed "Favoring a young earth interpretation" to "Non-Scientific Sites". I'm sorry, but that's clearly POV. The other subheader "Disputing a young earth interpretation" was changed to "External links" which is redundant, given that the subheader is under the "External Links" header. If someone wants to change these headers, that's fine, but we shouldn't change them in such a way as to insert our own POV. I've never seen "Non-scientific" in the link section on any other wiki page talking about creationism. That's just blatant POV-pushing. Yeshuamyking7 (talk) 20:02, 9 December 2008 (UTC)

Beta Decay[edit]

The article currently contains this statement: "(According to the standard theory, beta particles do not discolour the rock, although Baillieul (2005) suggests the need to reexamine the possible role of beta emission.)"

This seems to be unnecessary, and lacking support from mainstream science. I propose we remove this conjecture. Any objections? —Preceding unsigned comment added by EMSPhydeaux (talkcontribs) 22:18, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I have not yet read Baillieul (2005), but procedurally it should be read thoroughly before reverting text based on a cited source. It is preferable that a cited sourced be used to improve the article rather than simply reverting. Babakathy (talk) 22:57, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
OK, I've read it: Gentry "discounted the possibility that beta particles may play a role in coloration changes within minerals; however, neither author gives a basis for this rejection beyond the erroneous statement that beta particle energies are too low to have any affect. High energy beta particles have the well documented ability to break molecular bonds. Combinations of alpha and beta decay particles, beta particles alone, or some completely non-radioactive process may be the cause of the observed mineral discoloration haloes." Point appears to be B says G ignored beta particles erroneously. Babakathy (talk) 23:09, 30 January 2009 (UTC)
That is the point he was trying to make, but this isn't even about "B" and "G;" this is about the cause of a natural phenomena. By saying "B" said something about this natural phenomena we are essentially putting the opinion of some guy who wrote a page on a website up at the same level as scientists who have done the research, and published their results in peer-review articles. I think we can agree that we do not want to do this. I suggest one of two things needs to happen: (1) We need to remove the statement, or (2) we need to provide a more reputable source than an article on a website. Am I wrong here?EMSPhydeaux (talk) 06:03, 31 January 2009 (UTC)

Have been unable to find the reference needed for the selection on beta decay. Gentry wrote this in his book:

As Joly thought about which of these particles might be responsible for the halos, doubtless he quickly realized that the light beta particles would be unlikely to produce coloration changes in the mica, and that their zigzag paths could not yield sharp boundaries.

This could be used, but the journal Joly published would be preferable. If anyone knows which journal this is, that would be great.EMSPhydeaux (talk) 06:09, 2 February 2009 (UTC)

Superheavy elements[edit]

Relevance (and basis) of Schnier's work unclear: it is only relevant here if it provides new facts or interpretations of radiohaloes. Gentry postulated some SHEs might explained radholaoes and apparently Schnier's work says more about SHEs but for this article we need to know whether Schnier has anything to say about SHEs and radiohaloes - otherwise put the material on the Superheavy element page. Babakathy (talk) 23:05, 30 January 2009 (UTC)

I don't have access to that journal, so I tried not to alter it. I'm willing to bet that Schnier's work is pretty much a rehash of Gentry's; maybe we should simply remove Schnier, and provide references to more of Gentry's publications on this subject as they are more easily accessible. I was curious as to the reason the word giant was removed. The fact that they are giant halos could prove to be important.EMSPhydeaux (talk) 05:39, 31 January 2009 (UTC)


Why is this page named radiohalo rather than pleochroic halo?[edit]

I propose we make the page name pleochroic halos rather than radiohalos for the following reasons:

1) Pleochroic halo is a descriptive term about the observed phenomenon, while radiohalo indicates something about the commonly accepted theory of their generation (which could change... cause this is science). Therefore pleochroic halo will always be accurate, while radiohalo may at sometime become obsolete if a new theory of generation is commonly accepted.

2) At least the US geologic community prefers the term 'pleochroic halo' (this is the first place I have heard it referred to as such, and I'm a geology graduate student). However, as this page is British, the case may be different there.

3) 'Radiohalo' sounds like radio waves (low energy photons), when the radioactive damage is actually caused by β particles (He nuclei) and some γ rays (high energy photons).

However if it does not please the community to change the name, please at least put a redirect page from the term 'pleochroic halo' 130.39.188.140 (talk) 20:12, 16 September 2009 (UTC)

Hum, there's already a redirect? See pleochroic halo. As for the name of this article, wikipedia guideline says essentially "use the most common name". I don't know which of the radiohalo or pleochroic halo is most used, so I can't be of help here. Also radiohalo refers to radioactivity, not radio waves. I don't reall have an opinion on what should happen to this article in general. Feel free to be bold and edit the page.Headbomb {ταλκκοντριβς – WP Physics} 21:37, 16 September 2009 (UTC)