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The video that started me thinking about controlled demolition

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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 12:42 AM
Original message
The video that started me thinking about controlled demolition
This is my first post on this forum, so go easy. I'm a strong skeptic of the official story, but I'll be the first to admit that I have no freaking clue what actually happened that day.

For a long time, I thought the proponents of controlled demolition were simply crazy. Then I saw this video:

http://911research.wtc7.net/wtc/evidence/videos/docs/wt...

The thing just looked viscerally wrong to me. Here's a few questions that immediately came to mind when I saw it:
  • For an uncontrolled collapse, the process looks extremely regular. Other clips show the top of the South Tower twisting downward as the collapse begins, yet the building seems to come down in an orderly, floor-by-floor fashion. Throughout the clip, the descending line of destruction looks perfectly parallel to the ground. Shouldn't there be some irregularities based on how the collapse began?

  • How is that concrete being pulverized? It looks like the clip starts shortly after the collapse begins, but the concrete is already being hit with enough force to turn it to dust.

  • Isn't the debris moving away from the building too quickly? The descent of the top does not look like it carries enough force to impart that kind of lateral velocity to the concrete and other materials.

  • The collapse looks like it happens at a speed equal to or slightly greater than free-fall, given the fact that it seems to match pace with the falling debris. How is this possible?

  • Why are the corners of the building staying intact longer than the sides? The video clearly shows the sides of the building being destroyed while the corners stay solid for a moment longer. If the collapse truly started from the top of the structure, shouldn't the corners crush down with the rest of the floor? The fact that the corners remain solid makes it look like the sides are being blown out by some force other than a vertical collapse.


Since seeing this clip, I've done research and read the various engineering analyses of the collapse. I'm not a structural engineer, so I'm unable to deeply evaluate the opposing theories on how the buildings came down. However, nothing I've read has been able to change the fact that this video just looks wrong to me. From my perspective, the gut feel that I'm not watching a natural structural failure is the most troubling piece of evidence in this puzzle.

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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 05:00 AM
Response to Original message
1. Good questions
Welcome to the DUngeon :hi:

I'm sure the OCTers will show up soon enough to distract and discredit your observations, but don't let someone tell you not to believe what your own eyes see.

In answer to your questions:

1. Yes, I agree, there be some irregularities based on how the collapse began. The damage from the planes and the fires were not the same in each tower, yet they both fall in almost the same exact way. That does not make sense, does it?

2. It does appear that the pulverization began inside the building before the outer walls started falling away from the buildings.

In this picture of WTC2, you can see the east wall pulling away from the top of the building in one piece and the interior appears to be pulverized already.



In this picture of WTC1, you can see the east wall pulling away from the top of the building in one piece and the interior appears to be pulverized already. (I seem to be repeating myself?)




3. Isn't the debris moving away from the building too quickly? Here's NIST attempt at an explanation:

6. How could the WTC towers collapse in only 11 seconds (WTC 1) and 9 seconds (WTC 2)speeds that approximate that of a ball dropped from similar height in a vacuum (with no air resistance)?

NIST estimated the elapsed times for the first exterior panels to strike the ground after the collapse initiated in each of the towers to be approximately 11 seconds for WTC 1 and approximately 9 seconds for WTC 2. These elapsed times were based on: (1) precise timing of the initiation of collapse from video evidence, and (2) ground motion (seismic) signals recorded at Palisades, N.Y., that also were precisely time-calibrated for wave transmission times from lower Manhattan (see NCSTAR 1-5A).

As documented in Section 6.14.4 of NIST NCSTAR 1, these collapse times show that:

the structure below the level of collapse initiation offered minimal resistance to the falling building mass at and above the impact zone. The potential energy released by the downward movement of the large building mass far exceeded the capacity of the intact structure below to absorb that energy through energy of deformation.

Since the stories below the level of collapse initiation provided little resistance to the tremendous energy released by the falling building mass, the building section above came down essentially in free fall, as seen in videos. As the stories below sequentially failed, the falling mass increased, further increasing the demand on the floors below, which were unable to arrest the moving mass.


4. Why do the corners stay intact longer then the sides? The corners would be the strongest parts of the outer walls of the buildings. In a progressive collapse you would expect them to break apart with the floor they were attached to, but that does not appear to be what happens.

In many ways, we seem to be in the same boat. I am not a structural engineer either but I do know that a lot of what I see when I look at these images does not make sense, and that these building could not have possibly collapsed in the manner that they did, just from the damage from the airplanes and the fires that resulted.





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quickesst Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 05:41 AM
Response to Reply #1
2. What still gets me....
is how the floors collapsed from the weight above when the weight above is really no more than dust. I'm sure there was some solid weight at the top that came down to the impact area, but it seems illogical that there was enough weight there to cause the complete collapse of the towers. At some point during the collapse, the "weight" of the upper floors consisted of mainly fine dust. The, according to the oct, floors below the impact area, were still untouched, and being in construction for app. twenty years, it is inconcievable to me that no more resistance was met at the stable bottom floors than at the top floors near the impact. I can really only understand this from a layman's point of view, but that layman's experience comes directly from involvement in steel building construction. I leave the physics classes to those who are immenently more qualified than I am, but I also believe that if twenty years of experience in the commercial construction field could be directly downloaded to the scholars here, it would change, and or affect many people's way of viewing this. A little common sense helps too. Thanks.
quickesst
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hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:25 AM
Response to Reply #2
3. You are kidding, right?
30 stories of structural steel just disappeared? The dust is sheet rock and light weight concrete.
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vincent_vega_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:00 AM
Response to Reply #2
4. No more than DUST????
IF each tower had a mass of 250,000 tons, and the part that initally fell 12' on the floor below was 20 stories that means it was 50,000 tons moving 12' in a very short period of time.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:10 AM
Response to Reply #4
5. However, most of it
fell out and away from the building, thereby relieving a lot of the load from the core.
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:35 AM
Response to Reply #5
6. "Most" ? You have evidence?
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 07:35 AM by greyl
Additionally, your argument is different from quickesst's, who apparently thinks that 1000 pounds(for example) of concrete weighs less than a thousand pounds of dust.

I'll let you two argue about it.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:53 AM
Response to Reply #6
7. Just look at the pictures


That's a lot of concrete dust,steel beams and aluminum panels coming down 'outside' of the walls below. That is why at least half the building ended up in the plaza. If everything went straight down most of the pile should have stayed within the footprint of the building.

BTW: A 1000 pounds of concrete does turned into dust and at least half of it blew away, so no it did not weigh less but that is not the amount that fell down during the collapse.



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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:26 AM
Response to Reply #7
8. But how much is that?
There's no way to tell from the videos. When the collapse first begins, for the first few floors, there isn't much ejected except for smoke, dust, and some of the exterior columns. After those first few floors collapsed, total collapse was already inevitable. After those first few floors, you can see some heavier stuff being ejected, but it's still not a significant percentage of the total; it's only stuff that's already near the edge. Structural failure IS an "explosive" event, because internal strain is being released quickly after failure, just like when you break a cracker. But most of the mass COULDN'T be ejected because it was being pressed down and held in place by the collapsing top block. After the top block had been completely crushed, you start to see a "fountain" of a lot of heavy stuff going out to the side, as in your picture. There's a lot of kinetic energy there trying to go somewhere in a hurry, and that stuff is simply taking the path of least resistance: out the side, However, there's still more than enough mass left in the pile to continue the collapse all the way to the ground, because it just can't get to the side.
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vincent_vega_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:18 AM
Response to Reply #7
10. Yes the building lost mass on the way down.
Thats why we have the outer columns still standing at the base.

But MOST is not even close. Figure each floor is made up the outer and core columns, concrete floor, interior wall board construction and typical office furnishings.

The majority of the debris is made up of outer columns and debris from the crushed concrete and wall board. Core colums aint going any place, nor is most of the floor concrete, pulverized or not. I figure a loss of about 25% of the mass outside the perimeter of each floor when it collapses. That is 62.5 tons of debris per floor. That still leaves 187.5 tons per floor.

Then remember the collapse did not start at the top floor, so you had 20 stories of mass in motion. That hammer wouldn't have been fully destroyed until 20 floors below it had been pummled. Then it would still retain around %75 of it's mass or 3,750 tons moving and close to free fall.



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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 01:55 PM
Response to Reply #7
14. Just look at the pictures? Just look at this picture:
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 02:02 PM by greyl
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:34 PM
Response to Reply #14
17. Cool pic
but I can very quickly establish that what I'm seeing here is an illusion. I've never been able to do that to my own satisfaction when it comes to videos of the towers collapsing.

That doesn't mean that the progressive collapse theory is wrong, but it does mean that I'll have trouble accepting it without a clear, cohesive narrative that explains the anomalies.

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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:46 PM
Response to Reply #17
18. Of course, you've seen illusions like it before.
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 02:59 PM by greyl
(not that you'd be forever fooled if it was your first time)
However, your eyes still lie to you, even though you know what really exists in the image.
Knowing, doesn't change how the data is interpreted in your brain and make the illusion stop working.

Anyway, this optical illusion isn't exactly relative to watching the towers collapse, I just wanted to remind that "just look at the pictures" isn't always good enough, no matter which of the 1000's of sides of the argument one is on.

edit: forgot to mention that if one is predisposed to seeing something because they want to, chances are considerably higher that they will, even if it's not really there. Likewise with selective blindness.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:10 PM
Response to Reply #18
20. total agreement on your principle
However, I do know that we have a pretty decent physics computer embedded in our cerebellum, so things which "look wrong" should at least motivate us to produce a more detailed, coherent explanation. I haven't seen a satisfying one yet, but the sites you reference are a good place to start.


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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:16 PM
Response to Reply #20
25. You make a good point. nt
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vincent_vega_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 08:52 AM
Response to Reply #5
9. based on what scientific analysis?
or did you just pull that from where most of these definitive "thereby" statements come from.

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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 10:36 AM
Response to Original message
11. Those are good questions, but there are answers
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 10:39 AM by William Seger
> For an uncontrolled collapse, the process looks extremely regular.

In both collapses, the top of the tower tipped over -- very noticeable in the south tower, but the north tower also tipped a few degrees. That indicates that one side failed first, and the remaining columns held the top up long enough to start the tipping. (Think about what happened when the top tipped, though: The center of mass of the top shifted to put more load on the core columns nearest the side that collapsed, so they quickly became overloaded and failed too, so all the load got redistributed to the remaining columns, and it was just too much.) So, the initiation wasn't all that regular. The reason that it became more regular as it progressed is the tower design itself -- the way it was designed to distribute loads. When one floor was hit by falling debris in one area, its first response was to try to distribute the force to other areas, so by the time the load became too much, it had been distributed over a larger area than the debris that first hit it, and more debris had hit those areas, too, by then. Basically, the collapse zone flattened out simply because of the floors themselves.

> How is that concrete being pulverized?

I think what you're getting at is, why was so much pulverized "immediately" in the collapse, and doesn't that indicate explosives, and the quick answer is that there's no reason to think that all or even most of it WAS pulverized immediately. If you've ever seen concrete sawed, a very small amount of concrete can create a lot of dust. There's no way to tell how much of the concrete was pulverized in the initial collapse of that floor, how much was pulverized as it was ground up in the falling debris pile, and how much was pulverized when the whole thing hit the ground.

> Isn't the debris moving away from the building too quickly?

How quick is "too quickly"? But see my response to DYEW; structural failures are "explosive."

> The collapse looks like it happens at a speed equal to or slightly greater than free-fall, given the fact that it seems to match pace with the falling debris...

That's an easy one; that's simply not what's happening. Watch the early stages of any of the videos, before the debris cloud obscures too much: The debris outside the building is clearly falling faster than the collapse zone. Very quickly, it's hard to tell where the collapse zone is, but you can infer it where the debris is being "explosively" ejected, and it's definitely going down slower than the leading edge of the debris outside the building.

> Why are the corners of the building staying intact longer than the sides?

Because they are more rigid. Most of the exterior columns did not buckle in the collapse; they broke apart at their connections to columns above and below, because the tops of the columns were alternately being pulled in and pushed out by the falling debris. The columns nearest the corner were the most resistant to this perpendicular horizontal displacement because they were most closely tied to the perpendicular walls.

> ...nothing I've read has been able to change the fact that this video just looks wrong to me.

Things in the real world often don't behave the way we might imagine. None of us have anything at all to compare those collapses to.

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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 11:04 AM
Response to Reply #11
12. I would love to see funding for a large simulation of this
To me, that would be somewhat convincing: if a group of engineers could create a peer-reviewed computer simulation that produced the visual characteristics in the video. This would probably be one of the largest simulations ever attempted, especially if they included the full modeling of the building materials.

This is something I'd be happy to see my taxes used for. If they can show that the three buildings were likely to collapse in the way they did, it would go a long way toward answering many of the objections people have to the progressive collapse theory.

As for me, I'd just like some answers.


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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 01:40 PM
Response to Reply #11
13. This might be something a simulation could show quite easily
> Isn't the debris moving away from the building too quickly?

How quick is "too quickly"? But see my response to DYEW; structural failures are "explosive."

Compared to a full building collapse, this might be relatively easy to demonstrate. To me, the velocity of the lateral jets is the most jarring visual evidence that something is wrong with the progressive collapse theory. All you'd really have to use is the relative resistance of the exterior materials, the mass of the air column and the force bearing down on it (and probably a lot of other factors that I'm ignoring).

Seeing something like this would be a strong indication that this kind of progressive collapse is at least possible. Does anyone know if this has been investigated?


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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:22 PM
Response to Reply #11
15. To add to the concrete being pulverized question
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 02:23 PM by LARED
Analysis of the dust showed it to be a mix of construction materials. Concrete was a large percentage but if I recall it was far less than 50%. Other materials like insulation, glass, gypsum had significant levels.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:40 PM
Response to Reply #15
27. Another addition: How MUCH explosive would be required?
There was enormous gravitational energy available. If that was not enough to "pulverize" whatever was pulverized, the amount of explosive needed to compensate must be enormous.

911Myths does a rough calculation.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 11:46 PM
Response to Reply #15
41. See dust analysis here
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 02:25 PM
Response to Original message
16. Answers:
If you go here, and spend several hours evaluating the evidence and interpretation of the evidence, I think you will be way beyond 100% of those who believe in controlled demolition.
They don't want to see evidence that will challenge their beliefs. I'd bet you know what I mean.

There are many more resources out there, but taking the time to thoroughly analyze this one should be a very decent start.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:05 PM
Response to Reply #16
19. Thanks -- this video is excellent
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 03:14 PM by jgraz
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-54055555535282...

This is another view of the same collapse, including a close-up shot of the start of the event. I have to say, it does make it seem much more "natural" than the video I was looking at. More study is clearly warranted.

However, you will never shake my belief that Bush is an absolutely evil fucking moron. ;)

Edit: put in smiley to avoid misinterpretation.

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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:12 PM
Response to Reply #19
21. A question?
You stated

However, you will never shake my belief that Bush is an absolutely evil fucking moron.

You make it sound like someone by believing the towers collapsed due to fires and damage (ie not CD) is trying to defend Bush or change your opinion about Bush. To my knowledge everyone in this forum, from either side, is opposed to Bush.

Unless I misunderstand, why do you think someone is trying to change your mind about Bush?
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:13 PM
Response to Reply #21
23. heh -- I'll edit and put in the smiley
It was just a joke. I'm pretty sure we all subscribe to the "evil fucking moron" theory regarding Bush.
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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 04:26 PM
Response to Reply #23
29. I have conclusive proof of that !!!
It's still important to know what really happened on 9/11, because it could happen again. One thing I worry about is, since I'm pretty sure we'll have a Democratic president after '08, if there's another terrorist attack (which I think is pretty much assured for at least the next generation), a lot of conspiracists are going to force themselves to conclude that they're all in on it, and they can't trust anybody anymore.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 04:45 PM
Response to Reply #29
30. I don't think
we're likely to see another 9-11 because the organization, ie dark players that pulled this one off, no longer have the ability to pull off another major 'operation'. If you look at the key players in BushCo they are either like Poppy, very old or dead (like Ken Lay) and some are not all there mentally anymore. The younger ones from Bush Jr's crew are either in jail like Abramoff and Skilling, or facing indictment soon. Even Osama bin forgotten, seems to be pretty much out of business but who knows?





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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:13 PM
Response to Reply #29
31. I doubt a Dem prez would generate as much speculation
Speaking only for myself, my tendency to at least be open to conspiracy theories is driven my my absolute hatred of this regime. When you consider the Iraq War, Abu Ghraib/Guantanamo, the stolen elections, illegal wiretaps, Katrina, habeus corpus, etc, etc, etc... would any atrocity surprise you at this point?
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #31
33. jgraz, the question is not (W)ould, but (C)ould
They (W)ould AND (C)ould do Abu Ghraib, the Iraq war, etc.

Even if they (W)ould, they (C)ould NOT do the things the Conspiracists accuse them of doing.

It's a basic distinction. Just because they are nasty, it doesn't mean they did every nasty thing that happens.
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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 02:18 AM
Response to Reply #31
44. I don't have any problem...
Edited on Sat Dec-16-06 02:51 AM by William Seger
... in imagining that BushCo and PNAC might cook up some kind of "false flag" operation. What I have a serious problem with is why would anyone plan anything as ridiculously complicated and risky (in terms of failure and getting caught) like 9/11, when something much simpler and safer would accomplish the same presumed purpose? And then, if you wanted something to use as a justification for invading Iraq, wouldn't you make some attempt to actually tie it to Iraq? At least include a few Iraqis as the hijackers? Why a bunch of Saudis and a couple of Pakistanis, when those countries are supposed to be our allies in the fight against terrorists? Why tie it to bin Laden instead of Saddam and then be virtually forced into invading Afghanistan, then need to use a bunch of bullshit to try to justify invading Iraq too? It became clear pretty soon that BushCo really didn't have any interest in bin Laden or Afghanistan; why put them at the center of 9/11?

Then, there's the risk of getting caught. When you talk about the number of people who would need to be involved, conspiracists try to find some way to minimize that number, but even then, you still need a pretty large number of people to pull something like that off, compared to something simpler, and you would need every key person on board to keep it covered up. If you came up with a plan to plant explosives all over the buildings and then make it look exactly like planes caused the collapse, wouldn't you be a little concerned that things might not go as planned; or even if they did, that there might be some totally unambiguous, irrefutable evidence left around that somebody would find? Are you going to assume that anyone who happened upon that evidence would be willing to play along? Why build a plot around a such a major deception in the first place, when you could just do something that was exactly what it appeared to be, except for who did it? I'm pretty sure I would try to come up with something that involved very few people and which left absolutely no suspicious evidence.

Of course, that just means (to me, anyway) that the idea of 9/11 being an "inside job" seems highly implausible, which doesn't necessarily mean that it wasn't one. But when you suggest that something highly implausible happened, you need some convincing evidence, and there just doesn't seem to be any. Like you, some people think that the WTC collapses were highly implausible, so they want to see some convincing proof. But it doesn't seem to be the least bit implausible to me, and apparently doesn't seem that way to almost every expert around the world. Office buildings are simply not designed to withstand that kind of abuse, and I really don't care how often conspiracists insist that the WTC towers were. Even if the engineers wanted to do that, at the time there was no realistic, practical way to determine whether or not they could withstand a plane crash and the subsequent fire. NIST tried to do that with the best computer sims available today, and they immediately caught flak for not being realistic enough. And even if you don't quite understand how the collapse happened naturally, can't you at least admit that it's a far more probably explanation than the alternative? To me, that's the crux of the matter; I don't claim to know what "really happened," but in the absence of any convincing "inside job" evidence, I do happen to have some confidence in my ability to determine which hypothesis makes more sense.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 03:07 PM
Response to Reply #44
59. All excellent points
-- especially the Iraq angle. That's been the main thing that keeps me from buying into many of the alternative theories, in spite of my doubts about the official story. I also question why BushCo had to sneak out so many Saudis (including Bin Ladens) if they knew in advance the attacks were coming.

I'll freely admit that my willingness to consider 9/11 speculations comes directly from my hatred of the BFEE and my outrage at how they've exploited the attacks. But I don't agree with most OCTers that the alternative theories are that harmful. I'm perfectly happy to have people accuse BushCo of all manner of atrocities when they refuse to allow a real investigation of the attacks.

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 06:28 PM
Response to Reply #59
62. JFK was -strangled- in Dallas, and his body was hidden in New Jersey.
The 911 theories have become as ridiculous as the headline above. Theories that JFK was shot by a 2nd bullet, or that the Mafia, or Castro were involved are at least somewhat plausible and forced further investigations.

911 theories that are even a -little bit- grounded in reality might well force some investigations and thought. Plainly insane bullshit that denies obvious and undeniable facts does the opposite. Unfortunately, that's what has come to dominate the discussion.
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:12 PM
Response to Reply #19
22. That's damn solid knowledge, not belief. :) nt
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:56 PM
Response to Reply #19
34. The only problem with the info that greyl linked to
Edited on Fri Dec-15-06 06:57 PM by DoYouEverWonder
Is that they are claiming that the buildings failed because the of the trusses. However, in WTC 2 according to the NIST report, the 81st floor failed first. The 81st floor didn't have trusses.

Also, not 'every structural engineer in the world' agrees with the truss failure theory.

Engineers Set the Record Straight on Trade Center Study Results 11/04/02
By Nadine M. Post


Engineers have bombarded several media outlets with letters recently in an effort to correct errors in coverage of the aftermath of the World Trade Center collapse. The issue is exceptionally sensitive, they say, because of pending lawsuits against the developer-owner, the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey.

The first incident involved an Oct. 22 New York Times article and its front-page summary comparing a recent engineering report on the collapse to an earlier one. It called the findings contradictory and implied there was controversy and dispute between the two study teams. W. Gene Corley, senior vice president of Construction Technologies Laboratory Inc., Skokie, Ill., and the leader of the first engineering study team, says there is no contradiction between the two reports and no dispute or controversy. "We did not say there was any flaw in the design of the twin towers or that the trusses contributed to the collapse. We said more study was needed." The second report followed up on that recommendation.

The first investigation was a building performance assessment organized by the Structural Engineering Institute of the American Society of Civil Engineers. The second report was a private study of the destruction carried out for Silverstein Properties Inc., the New York City leaseholder of the trade center.

The other incident concerns an Oct. 27 article in the New York Post that was picked up by the Associated Press, which disseminated the story nationally. The story claimed single-bolt connections in the framework of the World Trade Center's twin towers contributed to their collapse in the Sept. 11 attacks, and attributed the statement to the findings of a team of top engineers from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

http://enr.construction.com/news/buildings/archives/021...

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 10:16 PM
Response to Reply #34
38. They are NOT debating explosives.
"Every structural engineer in the world" agrees that some sort of structural failure led to collapse.

The -exact- mechanism will be debated because design or construction flaw would lead to liability.

Don't hold your breath for any defense team to claim "Controlled Demolition" as a defense against a claim of design flaws.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:55 PM
Response to Reply #19
37. "Selected Data"
Note that a person of less than honest intent will find and publicize the video that supports his case.
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dailykoff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:15 PM
Response to Original message
24. That site has a lot of good information on the tower construction.
And there's no way in freaking hell they weren't demolished. Those buildings were about as overbuilt as two massively over-budget behemoths could be.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 03:36 PM
Response to Original message
26. jgraz: What's the alternate hypothesis? --the 5th Grade Giggle-fit test.
Ok, the collapse "doesn't look right" (but how many collapsing skyscrapers have you seen, and how -should- one look?).

But, what's the alternate hypothesis? And can that hypothesis pass the "Fifth grade giggle-fit test": Would the alternate theory cause a moderately bright Fifth Grader to break into an uncontrolled giggle-fit? If so, it probably isn't a serious theory.

So, what's the alternative? By what mechanism do you cause a 110 story building to fall some way other than a "natural structural failure"? What -mechanism- could cause the building to fall at a speed "equal or greater than free fall? Blowing out all the supports on 80-odd floors? How many explosive charges does that require? How many -tons- of explosive are required to "pulverize" all the concrete in the building? How do all those charges get placed with nobody noticing? What kind of control system can set them off in the precise order necessary? Why-on-earth would anyone do such a stupid thing?

As I say, if you can't come up with a story that passes the "giggle-fit-test" it's probably not worth worrying about.



FWIW, in a controlled demolition, charges are placed at the bottom of the building only and the building just collapses under its own weight. It's a 'natural collapse' except for the initial event. Just like the WTC towers. Except that the initial collapse of the towers was on the 80th floor.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. I have no alternate hypothesis, just questions
It starts from a couple of subjective beliefs:
  1. The Bush regime is the most murderous group of people who have ever been in power in this country. They would have absolutely no problem murdering 3000 Americans to further their personal goals. (After all, aren't they doing that in Iraq as we speak?)

  2. Since 9/11, Bush, et al. have acted in ways which strongly suggest that they are hiding something. Given my belief #1, I am left to assume that there is no limit to the level of atrocity they may be covering up

Given those two beliefs, I'm led to question anything they say anywhere without limit. If someone asserts that BushCo flew holograms into the towers and turned the passengers into organ farms for Dick Cheney, I may be skeptical but I'll still take a look at the evidence. I'll dismiss nothing out-of-hand because I truly believe these people are monsters and that we've only seen the tip of the iceberg with regards to their criminality.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 06:48 PM
Response to Reply #28
32. Yes, but foolish 'theories' just give Bush cover.
--Of couse-- Bush is hiding something. Just not holographic jetliners.

911 was the worst intelligence failure since Pearl Harbor. -Somebody- screwed up. Investigations would, with certainty, be embarrassing to the people in power.

There should have been vigorous hearings immediately after 911--hearings from which most witnesses left without their balls and several high officials were taken out and shot (figuratively at least).

Ridiculous Conspiracy Theories just confuse the debate. Serious questions get conflated with the nutcase theories and ignored.

You should also be aware of a few other things:

The content of the 911 theories (I am unsure about the people) has roots in the Far Right. Theories like Controlled Demolition make sense only if you believe in a Secret Shadow Government of supernatural power--much the same construct as the long-time motivation of the Paranoid Right. One of the earliest 911 rumors was that hundreds of Israelis missed work on 911--the old Zionist Conspiracy. That theory is still around here in the guise of "Larry Silverstein made money off 911" threads. Much of the 911 'evidence' can be traced to Far Right and Holocaust Denial sites.

911 Conspiracy Theories have also become a profitable venture for grifters. The video "Loose Change" has been an extremely profitable venture, even though it has been shown to be filled with lies, distortions and uses right-wing lunatic publications for reference. Other 'entrepeneurs' seek to copy that success. These guys are the worst kind of liar. Don't believe them.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 07:45 PM
Response to Reply #32
35. Like I said, I have no "theories"
I find the whole battle of personalities surrounding the 9/11 debate to be highly uninteresting. I'd like to look at the evidence and keep an open mind until I feel I've learned something conclusive. I spent an entertaining half-hour looking at the hologram theories before I broke up laughing (almost as fun as the Chemtrails websites). The CD allegations and pentagon crash theories have been harder to discount, mostly because of the goverment's unfathomable refusal to produce hard evidence for their side of the story.

I do, however, believe many of the so-called conspiracy theories surrounding the theft of the 2000 and 2004 elections, which means that from my perspective the BFEE has demonstrated some limited ability for clandestine organization. Does this mean that they'd be capable of pulling off something like 9/11? I doubt it. But I also believe the official story is complete bullshit.

Mostly I just want to find out what really happened. I don't "believe" most of the conspiracy theories espoused here, not because of personalities or because I think they're harmful (another debate) but because I haven't yet seen enough evidence to support these extraordinary claims.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 09:45 PM
Response to Reply #35
36. Try proving the Earth is Round.
Without recourse to authority.

You seem to mostly have your head on straight.

But one last point. From some experience debating the Woos.

It is extraordinarily, remarkably difficult to "prove" a proposition that is not actually in dispute. You -cannot- honestly debate whether the Earth is round or Armstrong landed on the Moon. Or that you are -actually- sitting in (whatever) city you are now in. Try it.

The fact that (for example) the Pentagon was hit by a jetliner is only slightly less well established than these things--missing plane and passengers, eyewitnesses, plane and body parts found in bldg, etc. Asking the Government to "prove" this occurence further is nonsense--like demanding they prove the Pentagon has 5 sides. It's entirely understandable that the officials involved in the investigations tell No Plane Conspiracy Theorist to stick their planes up their behinds.

Always remember that "the Government" or "the Pentagon" is actually individual human beings, many of whom lost friends in 911.

The Pentagon is pathologically secretive. They don't allow pictures even in normal times. But, if they had a rational basis for not releasing surveilance tapes, its probably because they showed Rumsfeld getting a BJ in the parking lot.

I said one last point, but one more.


You evaluate arguments on their merits; but, you often must depend on the source for the validity of evidence. If you know that individuals, organizations, or web sites have lied, or been negligently careless, or deny the Holocaust--be skeptical of future claims.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 10:17 PM
Response to Reply #36
39. Actually, I did that in my 7th grade science class
Check out the Eratosthenes experiment. But I get your point. :P
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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 12:57 AM
Response to Reply #39
42. I remember that...
... from the Cosmos series. But, it occured to me at the time that it really isn't proof that the Earth is round at all; something is left out of that traditional story. You would get the same result -- a difference in sun angle at noon -- if the Earth was flat but the sun was close to the Earth. How did Eratosthenes know he was measuring the circumference of the Earth instead of the distance to the sun? Only by assuming, for some other reason, that the sun was so far away that the rays were virtually parallel at the two locations. Where did that assumption come from?

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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 01:49 AM
Response to Reply #42
43. If the earth were flat, the measurements would follow a different curve
The flat earth shadows would follow a straight linear progression proportional to their distance from the position of the sun. On a sphere, the shadow lengths would follow a trigonometric curve (tangent, I think). I'm not sure if Eratosthenes had the precision of measurement necessary to make this distinction, but we certainly do today.

IIRC, Aristotle, among others, had already shown the earth to be round by observing it's shadow on the moon during a lunar eclipse.
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William Seger Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 02:41 AM
Response to Reply #43
45. So Eratosthenes didn't "prove" anything
In the traditional story, there are only the two angle measurements. And observing the Earth's shadow on the moon might imply the Earth is round, but it could still be a flat disk instead of a sphere. There needs to be more to the proof. Some say it was watching ships disappear over the horizon, but neither that or the non-linear variation of sun angles proves that the Earth is a complete sphere. It was the "preponderance of the evidence" rather than absolute proof that convinced the ancients that the Earth was a sphere.

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 07:34 AM
Response to Reply #45
46. How do we know Eratosthenes didn't fake the evidence?
I've never done this experiment myself. Truth-to-tell I've never watched a ship disappear over the horizon (midwesterner, you know).

Seriously, it's a fairly complex deduction. The question was debated and settled some centuries ago and now, its just part of our collective reality.

The Apollo photos would be the first clear demonstration. But, you'd have to see several to see Earth spin. It could be a flat disk. And, the pictures could be fake, too.

The question of the Earth circling the sun is even more interesting. :) You can actually -always- make the observations fit the Ptolemaic geocentric model. The theory just gets more and more complex and cumbersome.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 07:42 AM
Response to Reply #46
47. You've never met someone whose been around the world?
I don't care to travel much, so I've never had a big desire to do it myself, but I've known a number of people who have and they managed to come back to the same place they started out from, so that would be a pretty good indication that the world is round.

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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 07:56 AM
Response to Reply #47
49. He mentioned Apollo. nt
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:34 AM
Response to Reply #47
51. That proves nothing.
Those world travelers may be agents of the Secret Shadow Government.

Besides, you can go around the edges of a flat disk.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:42 AM
Response to Reply #51
54. Of course
no one can 'prove' anything to you.

Then you wonder why no one wants to respond to most of the crap you post.

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 09:32 AM
Response to Reply #54
55. I have no doubt that Earth -is- round.
The point is that if you are committed to a pre-determined viewpoint, or just deliberately obtuse, -any- observation can be discounted or crammed into the preferred 'theory'.

In any event the hypotheses under consideration must be stated clearly.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 09:35 AM
Response to Reply #55
56. I'm a pretty rational and logical person
My theories usually turn out to be pretty sound whether it's about 9-11 or the rest of my life.

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 10:35 AM
Response to Reply #56
57. Good. Can you show me a picture of a structural beam cut by Thermate?
And, how many tons of explosive would be required to pulverize -all- the concrete in the WTC?

And, how many explosive charges would be required to achieve "Free Fall" of the WTC?

And, can you prove that Cleveland is in Ohio?

Pretty easy rational questions.
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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 10:39 AM
Response to Reply #57
58. According to you
the damage from the planes and the resulting fires were enough, so I suppose you don't need any explosives at all.

How many explosive charges did they need? Zero, that's not how it was done. Besides I'm actually agnostic about thermite.

And no, in your world, I can't prove anything.

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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 06:14 PM
Response to Reply #58
60. According to knowledgeable esperts.
-My- opinion isn't worth a warm bucket of spit.

And neither is yours.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 06:15 PM
Response to Reply #58
61. Since thermate -cannot- cut a beam, how can you be agnostic?
If the proposed mechanism won't work, that's not how it happened.

Isn't science wonderful?
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greyl Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #46
48. The successful orbit of Sputnik would have been
pretty damn solid proof, as well, at least to those who worked on the mission.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:36 AM
Response to Reply #48
52. It would require some creative physics to explain.
But, of course, we only have the Main Stream Media's account.

Sputnik might have been faked, too.

Just like the Apollo landings.
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jgraz Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:02 AM
Response to Reply #45
50. Probably not..but my 7th grade class did :)
BTW, the "frisbee" theory is easily disproved just by watching the eclipse progress. If the earth were a disk, the shape of the terminator would change radically as the earth rotates.
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MervinFerd Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-16-06 08:40 AM
Response to Reply #50
53. But, how do you know the eclipse is from Earth's shadow?
The textbook says that, but its really just part of the "Official Round Earth Theory" (ORET).

If you reject ORET....
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jberryhill Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-18-06 01:10 PM
Response to Reply #35
63. Unfathomable Refusal....
Edited on Mon Dec-18-06 01:13 PM by jberryhill
How much effort should, say, NASA put into dealing with "Faked Moon Landing" stuff?

They put up one webpage:

http://science.nasa.gov/headlines/y2001/ast23feb_2.htm

Now, you can find hundreds of websites that "prove" the moon landings never happened. Why does NASA refuse to prove that man landed on the moon? Hmmm?

Buzz Aldrin finally arrived at an appropriate response:

http://www.csicop.org/articles/20021018-aldrin /


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DoYouEverWonder Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-18-06 01:24 PM
Response to Reply #35
64. There's a lot of evidence out there
you just have to look for it.

Ray McGovern has said that because of the internet, we have as much access to information, that the intelligence guys have. This was not the case, even just 10 years ago.

You do have to shift through a fair bit of misinformation, but there is tons of original source material and images that confirm 9-11 had to be an inside job and that whoever brought down the WTC, knew exactly what they were doing and did what they could to minimize the loss of life. The planes were just for show, or has Rummie would say, shock and awe.

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wildbilln864 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-15-06 11:09 PM
Response to Original message
40. well said!
and welcome to the dungeon.
You are exactly right!
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