Did you know that the Earth doesn’t have any water on it?
Yup. It’s bone-dry.
Or at least it should be, according to the nebular hypothesis (the standard secular model for the origin of our Solar System).
The nebular hypothesis says the Solar System formed out of a big cloud of gas. As the cloud shrank under the force of gravity, various chemicals condensed out of the cloud and became liquid and/or solid, eventually aggregating into the planets and other objects we see today.
This model makes predictions about how the condensation could have occurred. And it turns out that the Earth is too close to the Sun for water to have condensed out of the cloud here.
Therefore, even though 70 percent of our planet’s surface is covered with water… even though the oceans, on average, are over two miles deep… even though you are made up of mostly water…
…the secular model for our Solar System says the Earth shouldn’t have any.
Obviously, this is rather embarrassing for secular astronomers. How do they explain this?
The usual explanation is that the water was delivered after the Earth formed.
Supposedly, early in its history, the Earth was bombarded with millions of comets. Since comets are made of ices, they contain water. Therefore, this huge comet bombardment brought lots of water to Earth.
An Explanation Debunked
That explanation was popular for a long time. However, it stopped working once we actually started to measure the composition of comets.
Since the mid-1980s, we’ve measured the chemical makeup of several comets, including Comets Halley, Hale-Bopp, and Hyakutake. They’ve all turned out to have lots of deuterium (a heavy form of hydrogen).
Since the Earth’s oceans contain very little deuterium, it’s clear that comets could not have been significant suppliers of the Earth’s water.
Ever since then, our planet’s water has been an uncomfortable thorn in the side for secular astronomers. Water can’t be here—but obviously it is.
A New Comet, But No New Solution
In 2011, the Herschel Space Observatory discovered that a comet named Hartley 2 has water that more closely matches the composition of Earth’s water.
Secular astronomers were relieved. This comet ‘confirmed’ their model after all (or so the media stories claimed). Now this model can account for water on Earth again.
Well, you can believe that if you want to. But you’ll need to ignore some glaring problems.
For one thing, all the other comets we’ve measured still have twice as much deuterium as Earth’s water.
If comets were really the source of Earth’s water, why was the Earth selectively bombarded by only the comets with the proper deuterium ratio?
Secular astronomers might retort that there are two separate sources of comets. Hartley 2 comes from the Kuiper Belt, while the previous comets we measured all came from the Oort Cloud.
(The Kuiper Belt is an alleged disk of objects outside the orbit of Neptune, while the Oort Cloud is an alleged sphere-shaped cloud much farther out around the whole Solar System. The Oort Cloud has never been observed, while the objects outside of Neptune’s orbit are far fewer than the Kuiper Belt model predicted. So the secular rebuttal is itself rebutted already—but let’s ignore that for now.)
Anyway, since Kuiper Belt objects are closer to the Earth and have orbits roughly within the plane of the ecliptic, they’re much more likely to have Earth-crossing orbits.
In other words, Kuiper Belt comets are more likely to crash into us.
That’s true. But it also doesn’t help the secular model much, for two reasons:
- You can’t say that all Kuiper Belt comets have one ratio and all Oort Cloud comets have a different ratio, because the secular model says the Oort Cloud’s comets originally came from the Kuiper Belt. (Supposedly, they got flung out of its outer region by gravitational interactions with the gas giant planets.) 1
- Even if the two populations were actually chemically distinct, you would have a different problem: Why was the Earth bombarded only by Kuiper Belt objects? Even if only a small fraction of the total bombardment came from the Oort Cloud, the Earth’s deuterium ratio would have been increased above that of the Kuiper Belt comets.
Therefore, Comet Hartley 2 doesn’t actually solve the problem that Earth’s water poses for the secular model.
And so, secular astronomers are still looking for other solutions.
Enter, Stage Left: Asteroids
The latest explanation for why there’s water in your kitchen faucet is that it came from asteroids.
Two teams of astronomers recently observed a thin coating of water frost on a medium-sized asteroid named 24 Themis. Astronomers are interpreting this to mean that many or most of the other asteroids have water too.
Therefore, the Earth’s water could have come from asteroids.
In fact, since there’s no other possible source, Earth’s water must have come from asteroids.
But there’s a problem here.
Asteroids can’t be the source of Earth’s water
On Earth we find meteorites called carbonaceous chondrites, or C chondrites, that contain up to 22 percent water. These are thought to come from parent bodies similar to asteroids like 24 Themis.
But C chondrites are rare. They make up less than 5 percent of the meteorites that fall onto Earth.
And their parent asteroids can’t be the source of Earth’s water anyway. Typical C chondrites have the wrong chemical composition. They’re different than Earth in their ratios of xenon to krypton, argon to water, osmium isotopes, and other things.
Thus, as an article in Science News noted, “no more than 50 percent, and probably less than 15 percent, of Earth’s water could have been added from space at the end of our planet’s formation.” 2
In fact, water ice on 24 Themis causes more problems for the secular model than it solves. Ice can’t last on the surface of an asteroid for 4.5 billion years—it would have been burned away by the solar wind long ago.
So evolutionists are forced to speculate that either these asteroids have reservoirs of ice deep inside, to keep replenishing the surface—an idea for which there’s no evidence—or that sunlight could somehow form ice from oxide minerals on the surface faster than it burns it away. This is an implausible idea indeed.
24 Themis looks young, not billions of years old. Instead of supporting the secular model, this asteroid discredits it. But setting that aside, it does NOT solve the problem of where Earth got its water.
And that brings us back to where we started. According to the secular model, our planet should have very little water.
Looks like the secular model is wrong.
- Some astronomers recently proposed that the Solar System’s comets actually came from other stars. Supposedly, our Sun was born in a large cluster of stars, and used its gravity to steal the comets from other stars. There are numerous problems with this idea, including the fact that there’s no observable evidence for it. Thus, it’s not a scientific model—merely a just-so story.
- http://users.unimi.it/paleomag/geo2/Harder2002.pdf, accessed Sep. 21, 2013