Creation Science

Young Earth Creation Science Argument Index


G1232:  K-Ar dates of 1986 dacite from Mount St. Helens are very old


Edited by Greg Neyman



The conventional K-Ar dating method was applied to the 1986 dacite flow from the new lava dome at Mount St. Helens, Washington. The whole-rock age was 0.35 +/- 0.05 million years (Mya). Ages for component minerals varied from 0.34 +/- 0.06 Mya to 2.8 +/- 0.6 Mya. These ages show that the K-Ar method is invalid.

Source:   Austin, Steven A., 1996. Excess argon within mineral concentrates from the New Dacite Lava Dome at Mount St. Helens volcano. Creation Ex Nihilo Technical Journal 10(3): 335-343;




  1. Austin knowingly sent his samples to a laboratory that clearly states that their equipment cannot accurately measure samples less than two million years old.   In other words, he knew in advance that the dates would be bad.  A normal geologist would have recognized the limitations of the lab and made adjustments for it...he would not have made the same mistake that Austin committed willfully 

  2. Since Austin misused the measurement technique, he should have expected inaccurate results, therefore the reason the dates failed is his fault, not the K-Ar dating method

  3. Austin admitted that his samples were not homogeneous.  Any xenocrysts in the samples would make the samples appear older.  Since he knew this in advance, he knew this would lead to false dates.  A normal geologist would have taken steps to eliminate this problem before sending the sample to the lab

For more Reading:

Talk Origins source article

Young-Earth Creationist 'Dating' of a Mt. St. Helens Dacite



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