Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin - Wikipedia
Corbin also had his images on several toys and games packets. Resklts, since the title of the article is, Is Online Shroud of turin carbon dating results realty Than . New scientific tests on the Shroud of Turin, which was on display Saturday in a Many experts have stood by a carbon dating of scraps of the cloth It determined that the earlier results may have been skewed by. Domain · Commercial Real Estate · Allhomes · Drive · Good Food · Traveller Faint writing seen on Shroud of Turin and they stand by carbon-dating that points to the shroud being a medieval forgery. dismissed them, due to the results of the radiocarbon dating test, Frale told The Associated Press.
In his first email to me, he made some comments about religion, science, and the evidence for the Shroud. He referred to people who want to believe in miracles regardless of the facts, how he attended a meeting with Pope John Paul II on the subject of Galileo, which he found far more interesting than discussions of the Shroud, etc.
In a later email, he told me that he wanted me to include a statement from him if I were to discuss our email exchange with other people. I've quoted the statement above. It's about religion, science, and the evidence for the Shroud, similar to his comments in his first response to me.
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- Radiocarbon dating of the Shroud of Turin
- New tests suggest Shroud of Turin is a medieval fake
It's extremely unusual for anybody to say that a statement like that should be provided if he's going to be cited in a discussion. The statement doesn't have much relevance to what I'd said in my emails to him.
Both times he brought these issues up, he did it on his own initiative. That may reflect the mindset he had as he approached matters related to the Shroud.
He seemed to look at the Shroud through the lens of the relationship between religion and science and how he thought some religious people were abusing science.
Because one of the comments he made was unclear to me, I asked him for clarification. He wrote back with a clarification in all-caps. Since he wasn't providing much information, he kept making such unreasonable and irrelevant comments, and he seemed to be angry, I ended the discussion at that point. What Wasserburg didn't say in his exchange with me is striking. When Caltech and Rossman were responding in to the charge that Rossman had done dating work on the Shroudthey didn't just deny that Rossman worked on the Shroud.
They also denied that any members of his research group did so, explained that Rossman has never been involved in any age-dating studies, stated that he has no expertise in the area, referred to how the division Rossman works in has never had the relevant equipment, and denied that Rossman had the discussion he was said to have had with Benford and Marino.
That's a forceful response, what you'd expect from people who thought the allegations about them were false and thought they had a lot of evidence to offer against those allegations.
Faint writing seen on Shroud of Turin
The contrast with how Wasserburg conducted himself is stark. He offered no evidence against the details of D'Muhala's claims about the test though he could have convincingly disputed some of them, as we'll see belowignored my question about his relationship with Heller, and changed the subject to what he thought of the Shroud and the relationship between religion and science more broadly. But the Rossman and Wasserburg contexts are substantially different. Wasserburg was just writing some brief emails in response to an insignificant person he didn't know.Shroud of Turin, SHROUDED IN LIES?
He may have been in a hurry at the time. He was 87 years old, so health may have been a factor. On the other hand, though Wasserburg only wrote a few brief emails to me, he could easily have used just a sentence or two to provide some arguments against D'Muhala's claims. And Wasserburg was willing to take the time and effort to provide me with a statement on his view of religion, science, and the evidence for the Shroud.
Why couldn't he have taken the time and effort to make some comments about the details of D'Muhala's claims, which was the topic I had asked him about? Health doesn't seem to have been much of a factor. As one obituary notes: Indeed, a paper on which he was the senior author was about to be published at the time of his death. His behavior in that exchange adds some weight, but not much, to the conclusion that he was involved in the test. After Wasserburg's death, I contacted some of his colleagues at Caltech, who had known him and worked with him, and they told me they didn't know anything about any work Wasserburg had done on the Shroud.
Inconsistent Claims I've noticed some problems with what Heller and D'Muhala have said about the test, such as D'Muhala's reference to the ends of the thread dating to the first and eighth centuries. Every other source I've seen disagrees with that dating. But my focus here is going to be on Adler. It seems that the most significant inconsistencies have come from him.
Although Rossman did not publish these data, Adler had confidence in his capabilities to accurately measure the age of the sample. The results of that test should be thrown out. White Horse Press, ], 75 Apparently, Adler said in that the starched end of the thread dated to A. Inhe expressed high confidence in the dating scientist's abilities. Inhe expressed a more pessimistic view.
Both of those inconsistencies can be explained without denying that the Shroud underwent a dating test in Maybe Adler adjusted his conclusions as he gained more information, from one or more of the scientists involved in the test or from some other source. In his presentation referred to above, D'Muhala comments that the scientist overseeing the test "was not an expert in radiocarbon dating".
My understanding is that the interview wasn't published until the first edition of Case's book in And the differences between what D'Muhala said and what Heller and Adler said also suggest independence. But D'Muhala and Adler in agree in saying that the scientist in question was somewhat inexperienced with the dating method under consideration.
So, it seems to me that Adler's later view, corroborated by D'Muhala, should be taken more seriously than Adler's comments on the subject. The impression I have at this point is that Heller was more at the forefront of the test, making arrangements for it as early asand his comments on the subject over the years were more consistent than Adler's. There may be reason to trust Adler over Heller in some contexts, but I think Heller generally has more credibility on these matters.
Adler's inconsistencies weaken his credibility on these issues. And the inconsistencies in general, not just Adler's, weaken the overall case for the test. But do the inconsistencies reflect dishonesty, honest mistakes, or some of each? Is there a core to these accounts that should be accepted, in spite of the inconsistencies?
Potential Motives To Lie It would be implausible to maintain that the claims about the test were fabricated in response to the carbon dating. In his presentation, D'Muhala said that Heller was talking to him about arranging the test as early as the fall of Meacham reports a discussion about the test that he had with Heller in In an email to me, Meacham wrote: But he was a great pal and admirer of Adler so he didn't pursue the matter further.
Too many sources would have to be dismissed to maintain that the claim didn't arise until after the test. Any argument that the individuals involved were lying in order to promote Christianity wouldn't be sufficient by itself.
My understanding is that Adler wasn't a Christian. Since the state of the evidence prior to the test was so favorable to the Shroud, what would be the motivation to go to so much trouble to make up and maintain an account of a test with such ambiguous and inconsistent results? It could be argued that the claim was made up in anticipation of possible future dating work that would go differently than desired. But why detract from the evidence that was so favorable to the Shroud at the time just to counter a potential future change in the state of the evidence?
Since the claim is that just one thread was tested, the results could be dismissed as a reflection of contamination in that area of the Shroud. If people were fabricating a claim about a test, it would have made more sense to have claimed that multiple threads were tested from diverse portions of the cloth.
And why not wait until after the carbon dating to provide details about the alleged earlier dating? That would have allowed them to tailor their claims about the test to the results. Instead, they provided details about the test years before the later test occurred. The nature of some of the claims made about the test suggests that the test did happen. Why name the University of California as the facility and, more specifically, the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory when a false claim about a test could so easily have been maintained without naming such a specific location?
If they had said that they didn't want to provide much information about the location, because of the unofficial and private nature of the test, that would have been highly believable under the circumstances. Apparently, Heller and Adler told people they were unaware of information about the test that they could easily have lied about if they wanted to.
Shroud of Turin replica proves medieval techniques could make relic, say scientists
Meacham tells us, in his comments cited earlier in this article, that Heller said he didn't know what the margin of error was on the test. InRay Rogers commented"I have not been able to find any information on the accuracy and precision for the dating method used [in the test]". So, it looks like Heller and Adler weren't making up claims about the margin of error of the test when the subject came up. White Horse Press, ], It seems to me that Adler's behavior at the Turin workshop in supports his credibility on this issue.
The Turin workshop was a meeting, attended largely by scholars in relevant fields, that had the objective of formulating plans for the upcoming carbon dating of the Shroud. During the course of the meeting, Adler argued for taking samples from multiple places on the cloth and advised that the cloth's edges and water stain areas be avoided Harry Gove, Relic, Icon Or Hoax?
Those recommendations would undermine the significance of the sample allegedly used in the test. Why would Adler lie about a test inyet try to persuade the Turin officials to conduct the later carbon dating in a way that would so much undermine the purpose of his lie? The citation of Wasserburg as the scientist who carried out the test would have been counterproductive if individuals like Heller and Adler were lying.
A lie would have been easier to maintain without naming somebody who actually hadn't been involved in carrying out the test.
Mark Goodacre Answers Carbon Dating Questions on CNN Website | Shroud of Turin Blog
Since the alleged test was unofficial and initially intended for private use, nobody would have been expecting the scientist s who did the testing to be named. Naming Wasserburg was highly unnecessary and risky if he actually wasn't involved.
And any suggestion that Wasserburg was cooperating with Heller and Adler and whoever else in a deception would create some problems for a lie hypothesis. The more people you have to include in the alleged deception, the less likely the hypothesis is.
And why involve a third person so unnecessarily, since nobody would expect the individual s who carried out the test to be named? Furthermore, why would Wasserburg want to be associated with a test with such inconsistent and ambiguous results? Any suggestion that Wasserburg lied to Heller and Adler by telling them that he had the thread tested when he actually hadn't is problematic. So is the notion that Wasserburg was joking. In his presentation, D'Muhala refers to Wasserburg as a "close friend" of Heller, and Heller thanks Wasserburg by name in the acknowledgments section of his book on the Shroud.
People don't normally lie or joke on such a significant matter, especially to the detriment of a friend, and it would be risky to Wasserburg's reputation and career to do something like that. As we'll see below, it looks like Heller and Adler did go to the trouble of getting a thread from the Shroud for doing the test. Even scientists and others who doubt the Shroud's authenticity would consider the Shroud a valuable artifact in some contexts as art, an impressive forgery, an item that's had a significant role in human history, etc.
To waste a piece of the Shroud in order to lie or joke about running a test on it would be frowned upon. And what purpose would the lie or joke serve that would make the risk worthwhile? When Heller and Adler discussed the test in their interview with Case, Heller was in poor health. He died the next year. Case refers to how Heller was in a wheelchair at the time of the interview, and he remarks that Heller looked so bad that he Case considered cutting the interview short in anticipation of Heller's not being in good enough condition to complete it The Shroud Of Turin And The C Dating Fiasco [Cincinnati, Ohio: So, Heller was a Christian who was in poor health at the time and was soon going to die.
That's an unlikely context for him to be perpetuating a lie about carbon dating the Shroud in When Case brought up the issue of the test during the interview, Heller was the one who initiated the response. Heller didn't just remain silent, say that he didn't want to discuss the subject, make some ambiguous reference to how people shouldn't be concerned about the test, or wait for Adler to take the lead.
Rather, Heller initiated the response and directly and explicitly affirmed that the test did occur. While somebody could come up with a scenario that would get around one or more of these difficulties for a lie hypothesis, it seems more likely that the claim of a test is true. Mark Antonacci writes, "Several STURP scientists have also confirmed these datings [from the test] to me and other researchers after this information was first published. Evans and Company, ], n. There's a higher quantity and quality of reasons to believe that the test occurred than that it didn't.
Scientific Issues I'm in a poor position to judge some of the scientific issues associated with the test. It would be helpful if other people would step in here and offer whatever they can.
A presentation by Alan and Mary Whanger claims that the thread tested in was about 8cm long. They also say that a thread of that size was missing from the corner where the carbon dating was done in See page 5 and the images on page 15 in the paper just linked.
An August 21, article in the Ottawa Citizen found herebased in part on an interview with Ray Rogers, claimed: Rogers, one of the threads from his samples was carbon dated - unbenownst to himself and against the wishes of Roman Catholic officials who had authorized the chemical analysis.
I've also seen vague references to something like "a university in California". Did any of those facilities have an ability to carry out the alleged test? Institute of Physics Publishing, ], Davis told me that the first carbon dating there occurred in However, a woman who visited Livermore's Discovery Center inJanice Howell, told me that a docent there said that Livermore had done dating work on the Shroud. For more about Livermore and the Shroud, see the comments section following this post.
I sent an email to Richard Muller of the University of California at Berkeley on the issue of whether any facility affiliated with that university had the equipment to do the test in question in In their response to Benford and Marino, Caltech denied that their Division of Geological and Planetary Sciences has ever had the equipment Adler described in the tape. I wrote to some scientists who specialize in carbon dating, and they doubted that Wasserburg could have done carbon dating with the equipment he had at Caltech in One said that he couldn't have done it, without qualification, and the other said that it's "extremely unlikely" that he did it.
And it seems that Heller was aware, early on, that Wasserburg had to go to another facility to get the dating done. Earlier in this article, I cited Meacham's account of Heller telling him as early as that the test was done at the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory, not at Caltech.
So, I think we can conclude with a high degree of probability that if the test occurred, it happened somewhere other than Caltech. According to Benford and Marino see pages hereAdler identified the technology used to do the test as Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry.
I emailed Alan Marshall, one of the inventors of that technology. I asked about the use of the technology in California universities in and what he thought of using the technology to date something like a thread from the Shroud. There were eventually IonSpec instruments at U. Riverside HemmingerU. Amino acid racemization could also be used. If mass spec was used, my guess is accelerator dating, which would probably be Berkeley. It seems highly unlikely that the test occurred in California.
And I doubt that the technology that was used was Fourier-transform ion cyclotron resonance mass spectrometry. D'Muhala's presentation refers to how "Jerry Wasserberg had come up with a linear accelerator mass-spectrometer technique for dating. He said he could use a milligram quantity to date it. The father of that technique was Harry Gove at the University of Rochester. Wasserburg a small thread sample for 14C dating using a then new and unqualified technique".
There is some overlap between the dating work Wasserburg was doing and what was being done in carbon dating by Gove and others. See, for example, this symposium on accelerator mass spectrometry that was attended by Wasserburg, Gove, and many others in related fields. But, from what I've read and have been told by scientists I've contacted, Wasserburg wasn't doing carbon dating, and his equipment was significantly different than that of Gove, et al. D'Muhala goes on, in his presentation, to acknowledge that Wasserburg "was not an expert in radiocarbon dating".
So, it wouldn't make much sense to think of Wasserburg's dating techniques and equipment as belonging to the field of carbon dating. It's doubtful that Wasserburg was so resourceful in a field in which he had so little training and experience. It's also unlikely that he would do something like develop such a significant new technique for carbon dating without telling the scientific community of his day about it and without any historical record of it outside of his alleged work on the Shroud.
It seems likely that D'Muhala misunderstood what Heller told him about Wasserburg. Heller described Wasserburg's accomplishments in contexts like mass spectrometry and the dating work he did on moon rocks, and D'Muhala mistakenly concluded that Heller was saying that the same equipment and techniques could be applied to the Shroud. I wrote to D'Muhala, asking him what he thought about the plausibility of such a scenario, and he didn't respond.
It's also possible that Heller was mistaken about Wasserburg, and D'Muhala correctly understood what Heller inaccurately communicated to him. Even if the test didn't occur in California, it could have taken place elsewhere. There was an ability to carbon date very small samples as early as the s.
The books by Gove and Meacham cited earlier in this article discuss the technology involved and provide examples of facilities that were using it during the relevant timeframe. Was Wasserburg in much of a position to arrange for a test to be done at some such facility? He was widely experienced, knowledgeable, and respected, and he had a lot of resources at his disposal.
He "got a job running a mass spectrometer in Harold Urey's lab and in earned a Ph. He "did important work on the dating of rocks", and "his advances in dating techniques contributed to the timeline for the evolution of the solar system that we know today". He was "an icon better: See here for an obituary of a colleague of Wasserburg, "James R. Arnold, a University of California San Diego chemist who helped develop the radiocarbon dating technique that's widely used in archaeology and later analyzed some of the first moon rocks brought to Earth by the Apollo astronauts".
Wasserburg is cited a few times in the article. See here for an article in which Wasserburg refers, into how he had known Arnold "for over 60 years". Another memorial of Arnold refers to his role in "the development of radiocarbon and other radioisotopic dating methods". And Arnold is just one example of the contacts Wasserburg had in relevant contexts.
Earlier, I cited a symposium on accelerator mass spectrometry that Wasserburg participated in, along with some experts in carbon dating. As Gove's book, cited above, illustrates, talk of carbon dating the Shroud was widespread in the carbon dating community by the time that symposium occurred. Wasserburg probably wouldn't have had much difficulty making arrangements for a dating of a Shroud thread.
That kind of scenario, in which Wasserburg arranged for a carbon dating to occur in a facility outside of California, would explain much of what's reported about the test.
But it also would fit poorly with some of what's been reported and would fail to explain other details. Could we supplement the sort of scenario described in the paragraph above with other factors to offer a better explanation of what happened? When Heller contacted D'Muhala in about the possibility of doing the test, the Shroud was receiving a lot of positive attention in the media and elsewhere, and the technology that would be used to date it was in its early stages.
Under those circumstances, Wasserburg may have offered to get a Shroud sample tested without providing many details. He may have had some interest in seeing the Shroud dated, as so many people did at the time.
He may have agreed to help as a favor to a friend Heller. It's easy to see how Wasserburg could have gotten involved and have done so without initially providing many details about how he would go about getting the sample tested. And any plan at that point would have been susceptible to a lot of change. I've given some examples, above, of connections Wasserburg had with the University of California. He may have used a contact he had there to arrange the test.
He could have had any of a variety of reasons for taking that approach. If his contact had a good relationship with somebody in one of the relevant carbon dating facilities, that relationship would provide a reason for working through that intermediary.
Wasserburg may have even worked with that individual in a similar manner in the past, in other contexts. Or Wasserburg's contact may have often traveled to the carbon dating facility in question, so that having him deliver the sample would be an efficient way of handling the situation.
There's also the fact that arranging the test through an intermediary would keep Wasserburg a step removed from the process and, therefore, allow him more deniability. Whatever his reasons would be for doing so, it's easy to think of a scenario in which he would work through an intermediary in some manner, and a contact at the University of California seems to be the best candidate for that role.
Wasserburg had multiple contacts there, and he had some sort of relationship with the Livermore Laboratory in particular. If he used a contact at Livermore to get the Shroud thread tested, that scenario would help explain why Heller referred to the test being done at Livermore in his discussion with Meacham cited near the beginning of this article and why the University of California has been associated with the test.
The fact that Heller referred to the test occurring at Livermore demonstrates that he was aware that Wasserburg couldn't get it done at Caltech. If Wasserburg's language was vague enough "I know somebody at Livermore who can do it", "I can get it done at Livermore", "Send it to Livermore", etc.
Some of Heller's other comments in his discussion with Meacham also bear mentioning here. Meacham tells us that Heller said he didn't know what the margin of error was for the test. Heller and Adler weren't just making up claims to answer any question that arose about the test. They would have known that the information they were ignorant of was significant, and people were showing interest in it e.
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