Such patterns of isotope abundances are only theoretical patterns because they involve several unverified assumptions about the exact path by which fusion build-up of the heavier elements is thought to have occurred. I should add that what correspondence there is between the most commonly accepted theoretical abundance pattern and the actual abundance pattern as measured on earth is the result of varying the parameters in the theoretical calculations to fit the measured abundances. (Readers desiring more details on how isotope abundance calculations are linked to various aspects of the Big Bang theory may consult an older publication, Nuclear Astrophysics, authored by Nobel laureate William A. Fowler, and published by the American Philosophical Society, Philadelphia, 1967, or a more recent one, "Nucleosynthesis and its Implications on Nuclear and Particle Physics", Proceedings of the NATO Advanced Research Workshop on Nucleosynthesis and Its Implications on Nuclear and Particle Physics, Les Arcs, France, March 17-23, 1985, 0. Reidel Publishing Company, 1986.)
The above discussion shows that the theoretical isotope abundance pattern used by Brown to formulate his version of primordial polonium and its most prominent decay product, thallium-205, is hinged on the assumption that the heavier chemical elements on earth—specifically including polonium—originated in stellar nucleosynthesis. Using that assumption Brown interprets the absence of thallium-205 in halo centers as indicating the absence of primordial polonium, hence implying that something is wrong with my identification of primordial polonium halos.
Here a most important point needs to be emphasized. There is another explanation for the absence of thallium-205 besides the one Brown has mentioned, namely: Instead of the missing thallium-205 indicating something is wrong with my identification of primordial polonium halos, what it actually shows is that the Big Bang version of primordial polonium is without any scientific basis. We should ever remember that the validity of a theory is determined on the basis of whether it agrees with the relevant experimental facts, and in this case it is abundantly clear that the Big Bang version of primordial polonium does not agree with the experimental facts.
Therefore, I reaffirm that polonium halos in granites did form from the decay of primordial polonium-218, polonium-214 and polonium-210, and this is why halo centers feature the decay product lead-206. (Halos from bismuth-212/polonium-212 also exist but are much rarer than those just listed.) I believe these types of polonium halos are evidence that the true isotopic composition of primordial polonium—meaning the polonium God created when He called the earth into existence—was irreconcilably different from that expected on the basis of the Big Bang model. In other words, when God called the earth into existence He left unambiguous evidence of His creative power which could never be confused with the Big Bang scenario. (Readers interested in knowing other reasons why the Big Bang model is wrong should consult the more extended discussion given in my book.)
On a different subject in paragraph 4, Brown refers to the presence of selenium in both uranium and polonium radiohalo centers, and the assertion is made that this is evidence for the explanation of halos involving solution transport of uranium daughters. The first problem with this view is that selenium is definitely not a constituent of uranium radiohalo centers, and it is not clear why such a claim would be made. (In fact, one of the other reviewers, Dutch, correctly notes that Group VI elements, which includes selenium, are not geochemically compatible with the U- and Th-bearing minerals that normally constitute U and Th halo centers.) Secondly, only in a very few cases have I observed selenium in the centers of polonium halos in granites. Possibly Brown generalized the results given in my 1974 Science report and incorrectly inferred that selenium in polonium halo centers in granites is the rule rather than the exception. Thus, all the arguments cited in this paragraph in support of a secondary origin of polonium halos in granites are based either on ideas or suppositions which are foreign to my views, or on incorrect interpretations of my published data.
In paragraph 5, my respected colleague does not directly comment on the implications of the falsification test as I have defined them, but instead generates his own interpretation predicated on the assumption of a successful outcome of that test. Brown is entitled to his views, but he fails to mention the evidence which contradicts the assumption of a successful outcome—namely, that, according to conventional theory, the conditions for reproducing granite from a granite melt have existed in nature countless times, yet the end result is rhyolite, a fine-grained, non-halo-containing rock that is quite different from granite, a coarse-grained rock which does contain halos. Additional explanation is given in my book, Creation's Tiny Mystery (page 130).
In paragraph 6 of his review, Brown claims my model of enhanced alpha decay suffers a severe loss of credibility. But this conclusion is obviously based on his acceptance of uniform radioactive decay rates—a direct consequence of the uniformitarian principle. Thus, this particular criticism results from his acceptance and use of a fallacious assumption.
Paragraph 7 could easily be interpreted as a correction to an erroneous claim on my part, but the fact is that my comments about Feather's evaluation are correct as they stand.
In answer to paragraph 8, U and Th atoms are more tightly bound because they are part of the zircon lattice structure. The Pb atoms, on the other hand, being the radiogenic end-products of U and Th decay, are rather loosely bound primarily because they have been displaced about 100 angstroms (by recoil from a series of alpha emissions) from the original U and Th lattice sites into a region where lattice disruption has occurred.
Paragraph 9 refers to the helium content of helium-producing wells. These may have their source in secondary uranium deposits, that is, uranium which has been separated from primary uranium-bearing minerals and widely dispersed via solution transport. A prime example of secondary uranium deposits are those of the Colorado Plateau. Helium migration occurs without difficulty from such deposits because of the dispersed state of uranium and its daughters.
There are two reasons why helium migration from zircons in granites is much lower than from helium escape from these secondary deposits. First, there is the difference in uranium content. Zircons, which may contain only about 100 ppm (parts per million) of uranium, are encased within granites containing an even smaller concentration of uranium, usually about several ppm. These concentrations are generally much lower than the uranium concentrations found in many secondary uranium deposits. Secondly, migration (or diffusion) from zircons has been found to be relatively slow at ambient temperatures, a fact which is attributable to the crystalline structure of this mineral. These two factors account for helium effusion from helium wells being significantly higher than helium diffusion from zircons. Thus nothing in this paragraph contradicts my claim that helium in zircons taken from deep cores is very strong evidence for a several-thousand-year age of the earth.
About paragraph 10, I appreciate the compliments about my work on halos in coalified wood. Of course, the analytical techniques that were used to investigate polonium halos in coalified wood were the same as those used to investigate primordial polonium halos in granites.
In summary, I thank Dr. Brown for presenting his detailed objections in print, thus enabling me to clarify to the scientific community some issues that have long been misunderstood. And in closing my response to his review, I again express my respect and admiration for him personally.
Earth Science Associates