"...I, the LORD your God, am a jealous God, punishing the children for the sin of the fathers to the third and fourth generation of those who hate me..." [Deuteronomy 5:8-10]

Wednesday, June 02, 2004

This Thomas Gold story gets weirder and weirder. It seems that Russian and Ukrainian scientists accuse him of plagiarism - and simple bad science:

"Sometime during the late 1970's, a British-American, one-time astronomer named Thomas Gold discovered the modern Russian-Ukrainian theory of deep, abiotic petroleum origins. Such was not difficult to do, for there are many thousands of articles, monographs, and books published in the mainstream Russian scientific press on modern Russian petroleum science. Gold reads the Russian language fluently."

"In 1979, Gold began publishing the modern Russian-Ukrainian theory of petroleum origins, as if such were his own ideas and without giving credit to the Russian (then, Soviet) petroleum scientists from whom he had taken the material. Gold tried to alter the modern Russian-Ukrainian theory of deep, abiotic petroleum origins with notions of his own in order to conceal its provenance, and gave his 'ideas' the (very misleading) name the 'deep gas theory.'"

"Worse yet, Gold's alterations of modern Russian petroleum science are utterly wrong. Specifically Gold's claims that there exist large quantities of natural gas (methane) in the Earth at depths of its mantle are completely wrong, - such claims are upside-down and backwards. At the pressures of the mantle, methane is unstable, and the hydrogen-carbon system there evolves the entire suite of heavier hydrocarbons found in natural petroleum, in the Planck-type distribution which characterizes natural petroleum. Methane at pressures of the mantle of the Earth will decompose to evolve octane, diesel oil, heavy lubricating oils, alkylbenzenes, and the compounds found in natural petroleum. [These properties of the hydrogen-carbon system have been described at greater length and rigor in a recent article in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences...] Regrettably, Gold is as ignorant of thermodynamics as he is of ethics."

Gold's name appears on a number of creationist websites, claiming that his theories support the idea of a "Young Earth". It's clear from Gold's own writings, however, that he considers these processes to have taken place over millions of years.

No comments: