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Age Limits of the Earth's Biosphere
By Dr. Robert W. Bass

Recently I spoke on the phone with my old friend, Nitro-Nobel Medalist & physical chemist, Dr. Melvin Cook, who is now 85 and "totally blind" (except that he can read a computer when it is set to 150X Magnification and thereby he is still reading & writing research papers).

Cook received a special Gold Medal in Stockholm in 1968 for doing the best work on the physical chemistry of High Explosives since Alfred Nobel discovered dynamite in 1867. (This medal was awarded by Nobel's company, not the Nobel Foundation, and it was for, among other things, inventing non-dangerous "slurry explosives" which are blasting agents as powerful as nitroglycerine but not anywhere so dangerous to handle.)

One of Cook's most extraordinary breakthroughs came when he discovered, by accident, and then _explained_ theoretically the remarkable phenomenon of a fully ionized plasma in the state of a liquid metal (rather than a gas, which is what all conventional plasma theorists believe is the ONLY possibility).

Though he is not infallible, he is certainly a genius who has made very important discoveries. And his works on prehistory merit serious study.

Cook is the author of the highly-scientific, very quantitative, and very difficult to read book "Prehistory & Earth Models" (PEM) published in London by Max Parrish & Co in 1966, but now out of print. The book is highly condensed, and reading is complicated by use of 3-letter acronyms for almost every technical term the second time -- and all later times -- but the book is in my opinion extremely valuable.

In 1993 Dr. Cook (a retired Prof. of Metallurgy at the U of Utah) updated PEM by a new book "Scientific Prehistory", 336 pages, many photos, tables, drawings, and graphs, Library of Congress Catalog Card Number 93-74404. This is a leather-covered hardbound book. Cook had 150 copies printed and placed in 150 libraries so it CAN be borrowed, but I don't believe that any copies are available for sale.

In December, 1993, Cook put out a 15-page privately-printed paper which summarizes the main findings (especially the main NOVEL findings in comparison to PEM) of his new book.

I believe that his material on solar nuclides would interest plasma cosmologists such as Wal Thornhill. Like the late Ralph Juergens, who had an isothermal model of the Sun, Cook does not believe in the conventional fusion-energy explanation of the Sun's energy, and he provides evidence that all of the Sun's energy can be explained" by the observed rate of matter falling into the Sun (i.e. rate of accretion).

Cook has chapters on ALL of the radiometric dating methods, and in my opinion, demolishes them all. He also computes that IF the cosmic rays are in "nuclear thermodynamic equilibrium" (NTE) then the Solar System and Earth are about 4.5 billion years old.

However, the surface features of the Earth cannot possibly be more than 100,000 years old for many reasons. For example (& the Editor of "Nature" admitted that this is the biggest anomaly which ever crossed his desk) the radiogenic helium escaping from the Earth's crust at a known rate and escaping into outer space at a known rate "prove" that the present atmosphere cannot be more than 100,000 years old.

See "Where is the earth's radiogenic helium?," _Nature_, vol. 177 (1957), p. 215.

Also, radiocarbon is being produced in the stratosphere at a rate TWENTY FIVE PERCENT discrepant with its well-measured absorption into the hydrosphere, lithosphere & biosphere; Cook once showed me correspondence that he had with Willard Libby over 25 years wherein Libby finally admitted he was wrong, the discrepancy is REAL and cannot be ignored. The deduction is that the Earth's atmosphere cannot be more than 30,000 years old, else it would have attained equilibrium already, which it has NOT! In Cook's view, the radiocarbon balance in the earth's atmosphere has attained 73 percent of its equilibrium value in the approximately 5,000 years "since the Flood."

In his latest unpublished paper Cook is providing evidence for a theory that the Flood resulted from a combination of his ice-cap model tipping the Earth or its crust as a result of certain Asteroid impacts which he thinks he has pinpointed. [this statement is made on Cook's verbal summary to me, and may be inaccurate]

Physicist Dr. Larry Vardiman has jumped onto the helium-escape problem, and written a 32-page mathematical paper: THE AGE OF THE EARTH'S ATMOSPHERE: a Study of the Helium Flux through the Atmosphere, 1990 in which he reviews in detail dozens of mainstream attempts to explain away the anomaly, and satisfied me (as a professional mathematician who checked his differential equations) that they have failed, and that the present atmosphere could have been produced in at most 2 million years. (This of course is 2,500 TIMES shorter than the uniformitarian age of the earth.) He quotes mainstream experts as admitting that "this helium escape problem will not go away, and it is unsolved."

Vardiman has also written an impressive-looking paper on the Ice Core dating method (which I have not studied myself). At the recent Portland conference, on "Planetary Violence in Human History Dr. Paul LaViolette disputed the Hapgood "Earth Crust Slippage" theory as argued by Rand & Rose Flem-Ath to place Plato's lost continent of Atlantis under Lesser Antarctica (which was supposedly in the Temperate Zone up until 10,500 years ago), by means of Ice Core dating. Hence, Vardiman's study of the flaws & fallacies in that method should be of interest to Dr. Laviolette.

Personally, I find the Earth-crust slippage model much more likely than the entire earth tipping over. Nevertheless, in my 1987 paper at Glasgow (of which I no longer have a copy) I mentioned that the Australian government Astronomer for West Australia had sent me an unpublished book showing his historical researches on the Obliquity of the Ecliptic (in which he compared the tilt from "gnomon measurements" and as they got more ancient the departure from the famous formula of Simon Newcomb became more & more pronounced. This Cambridge-trained astronomer then fit the observations with a dynamical model of the earth as a spinning top, and showed that the observations indicated that the axis of the earth was stabilizing in a new position after the entire earth had turned over about 2,500 BC (or whatever his particular dating of the Flood was).

I also have to admit that I have not yet checked out the mathematical accuracy of a paper sent me by a "Saturnist" mathematician in Italy named Dr. Spedicato by his friend, a Prof. Barbiero, in which Barbiero posits that an asteroid hitting the spinning earth under certain conditions could cause the Earth itself (rather than merely its crust) to tilt by a large amount.

Reading the Flem-Ath book has motivated me to want to check the Barbiero calculation, but there are not enough hours in the day!

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