Re: Magnetic field energy loss

From: George Murphy (
Date: Mon Sep 29 2003 - 22:18:46 EDT

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    allenroy wrote:
    > John W Burgeson wrote:
    > > I remember the magnetic field argument of Dr. Thomas Barnes, Hey -- he
    > > was a Prof at the University of Texas. A physicist. I was very impressed
    > > with the argument. Then an IBM friend shared with me the math under the
    > > claim. I don't think I ever gave the YEC claim and serious credence after
    > > that. The claim was not only abysmally incompetent physics, but
    > > irrational and speculative mathematics and, as presented by ICR,
    > > bordering on being intellectually dishonest.
    > Have you read this on the earth's magnetic field? Russell Humphreys, 2002,
    > "The Earth's Magnetic Field is Still Losing Energy," CRSQ (39:1, pp.3-13)
    > Humphres' debunks the evo's criticisms, and goes on to expand the concept of
    > Earth's magnetism -- many charts, tables, and equations. He also gives a brief
    > summary of developments in this "magnetic controversy." Thomas Barnes published
    > his first paper on how decay of the dipole moment fits the creationist concept
    > in 1971.
    > In 1983 geologist Brent Dalrymple criticized Barnes' work, saying "The
    > same observatory measurements that show the dipole moment has decreased since
    > 1829 also show that this decrease has been almost completely balanced by a
    > corresponding increase in the strength of the nondipole field, so that the
    > strength of the total observed field has remained about constant." Humphreys
    > then shows that Dalrymple didn't know what he was talking about.
    > There were quibbles back and forth between Barnes and Dalrymple, and some
    > others joined the fray. Humphreys writes: "After surveying the evidence for
    > geomagnetic polarity reversals for myself, I concluded that they had indeed
    > occurred. I proposed that they took place rapidly during the Genesis Flood
    > (Humphreys, 1986)."
    > Humphreys describes some more of the debate, then writes: "Dalrymple had
    > an opportunity to be an official reviewer for my paper, and to have his review
    > published. He did not take advantage of the opportunity. In my response to the
    > other reviews of my paper, I made note of Dalrymple's silence."
    > "Despite these creationist answers, skeptics today still use Dalrymple’s
    > old arguments to dismiss geomagnetic evidence. Much of that is probably due to
    > ignorance of our responses, but some skeptics are still relying on the
    > non-dipole part of the field. They hope that an energy gain in the non-dipole
    > part will compensate for the energy lost from the dipole part."
    > In 1968, the International Association of Geomagnetism and Aeronomy
    > (IAGA) began to systematically gather and preserve geomagnetic data from all
    > over the world. There's now a good database available (previously nonexistent).
    > Humphreys gets more detailed and technical, with graphs and tables,
    > including a description of how and why Dalrymple went wrong in his criticism.
    > Humphreys' closing paragraph says: "Today's energy decay rate is so high that
    > the geomagnetic field could not be more than a few dozen millennia old.
    > Moreover, during the rapid polarity reversals of the Genesis Flood, and during
    > the large fluctuations of surface field B for millennia after the Flood, the
    > rate of energy loss was much greater than today's rate. That shortens the age
    > of the field even more. In the absence of any workable analytical theory (or
    > data) to the contrary from the evolutionists, these data are quite consistent
    > with the face-value Biblical age of the earth, about 6000 years."

            If Humphreys were careful he would have said "Today's energy decay rate is so
    high that the geomagnetic field could not be more than a few dozen millennia old IF WE
    EXTRAPOLATE PRESENT DATA BACK THAT FAR." (My emphasis added.) That is of course
    obvious, but the fact that Humphreys doesn't make this crucial qualification is evidence
    of sloppiness. Moreover, the statements about "large surface fluctuations of surface
    field B for millenia after the flood" are purely hypothetical. (I make these statements
    without any commitment to H's conclusions about present data,)

            Humphreys theory of geomagnetism is worth approximately as much as his cosmology
    - zero,

            & apropos Barnes - his _Physics of the Future_ (published by ICR) is one of the
    msot grotesque attempts to do serious physics I've ever read. It's essential claim is
    that "the physics of the future" is the physics of 1890. He labors mightily with a
    classical model of the atom to replaces Bohr's theory (which he apparently thought was
    modern QM!) but couldn't even get the Rydberg formula.



    George L. Murphy

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