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paulthompson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 08:01 PM
Original message
The WTC molten steel question
I'm in the middle of making some new 9/11 Timeline entries, as usual, and here's one I'm working on that was sent to me by a great volunteer named Matthew:

September 12, 2001-February 2002: Witnesses See Molten Metal in the Remains at Ground Zero
In the weeks and months after 9/11, numerous individuals report there being molten metal in the remains of the WTC at Ground Zero. Ken Holden, who is involved with the organizing of demolition, excavation and debris removal operations there later describes to the 9/11 Commission, "Underground, it was still so hot that molten metal dripped down the sides of the wall from Building 6." <9/11 Commission hearing, 4/1/03> Leslie Robertson, the structural engineer responsible for the design of the WTC, describes fires still burning and molten steel still running 21 days after the attacks. Alison Geyh, who heads a team of scientists studying the potential health effects of 9/11, reports, "Fires are still actively burning and the smoke is very intense. In some pockets now being uncovered, they are finding molten steel." Ron Burger, a public health advisor who arrives at Ground Zero on September 12, says that "feeling the heat" and "seeing the molten steel" there reminds him of a volcano. According to a member of New York Air National Guard's 109th Air Wing, who is at Ground Zero from September 22 to October 6, "One fireman told us that there was still molten steel at the heart of the towers' remains. Firemen sprayed water to cool the debris down but the heat remained intense enough at the surface to melt their boots." New York firefighters later recall in a documentary film, "heat so intense they encountered rivers of molten steel." As late as five months after the attacks, in February 2002, firefighter Joe O'Toole sees a steel beam being lifted from deep underground at Ground Zero, which, he says, "was dripping from the molten steel." Physics professor Steven E. Jones later claims this molten metal is "direct evidence for the use of high-temperature explosives, such as thermite," used to deliberately bring down the WTC towers. He says that without explosives, a falling building would have "insufficient directed energy to result in melting of large quantities of metal."

and here's a related one Matthew also made:

September 16-23, 2001: Images of Ground Zero Show Thermal Hot Spots
In response to requests from the Environmental Protection Agency, through the US Geological Survey, NASA flies a plane over the site of the WTC complex, equipped with a remote sensing instrument called AVIRIS. AVIRIS is able to remotely record the near-infrared signature of heat. Analysis of the data it collects indicates temperatures at Ground Zero of above 800 degrees Fahrenheit, with some areas above 1,300 degrees. On September 16, dozens of "hot spots" are seen, but by September 23, only four or five remain. Despite the WTC rubble being pumped with an almost constant jet of water, eventually totaling thousands of gallons, almost 12 weeks after 9/11 at least one fire is still burning, making it the longest-burning structural fire in history.

Since I'm not a scientist or engineer, these WTC issues are not my forte, but these things do need to be addressed in the timeline. So, I would like to hear from people at this forum about these above entries. They are just rough drafts - is there anything important missing? I'm particularly keen to hear other explanations of the molten metal (as mentioned in news articles or official reports, as that's the only sourcing I use). I would like to include theories other than that by Dr. Jones, if they exist. What's the "official" explanation? Matthew will look again, but he thinks the NIST reports on the WTC collapses doesn't mention the molten metal at all. Is that true?

I'll admit a lack of hard science expertise, but I find molten steel still dripping five months later extremely odd. If the official reports fail to mention it whatsoever, that also would be strange.
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hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 08:15 PM
Response to Original message
1. The only thing that will melt steel weeks after the collapse..
would be fires in the rubble. A good analogy would be a landfill fire smoldering for months. There were millions of tons of combustibles in the rubble, which would act as an insulating cap to trap heat.

Thermite is nonsense - it would not melt entire beams. Thermite cutting charges would make narrow cuts in the steel (think laser beam thickness) and any molten steel, besides being a small amount, would be scattered over wide area due to the violence of the explosion.

High explosives don't melt steel - they shatter it with a high pressure shock wave.

Dr. Jones knows nothing about explosives.
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paulthompson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 08:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. yes
I find the thermite explanation wanting, which is one reason why I'd like to include other explanations. But I also find the extent and duration of the molten steel fires remarkable. I get the landfill analogy, but I still find it remarkable, esp. if the official reports haven't even mentioned it.
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hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 09:28 PM
Response to Reply #2
5. Here is a good discussion ... look at the temperatures they measured.
Combustion products continued to be emitted from the debris pile in the ensuing months. Dust was "no longer part of the plume per se after about day three or four because the rains came and washed some of the dust and smoke away," Lioy said. What was left were smoldering fires.

The fires, which began at over 1,000 C, gradually cooled, at least on the surface, during September and October 2001. USGS's AVIRIS also measured temperatures when it flew over ground zero on Sept. 16 and 23. On Sept. 16, it picked up more than three dozen hot spots of varying size and temperature, roughly between 500 and 700 C. By Sept. 23, only two or three of the hot spots remained, and those were sharply reduced in intensity, Clark said.

However, Clark doesn't know how deep into the pile AVIRIS could see. The infrared data certainly revealed surface temperatures, yet the smoldering piles below the surface may have remained at much higher temperatures. "In mid-October, in the evening," said Thomas A. Cahill, a retired professor of physics and atmospheric science at the University of California, Davis, "when they would pull out a steel beam, the lower part would be glowing dull red, which indicates a temperature on the order of 500 to 600 C. And we know that people were turning over pieces of concrete in December that would flash into fire--which requires about 300 C. So the surface of the pile cooled rather rapidly, but the bulk of the pile stayed hot all the way to December."


http://pubs.acs.org/cen/NCW/8142aerosols.html
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:01 AM
Response to Reply #5
14. Pray tell, what is the melting point of steel? (nt)
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:21 PM
Response to Reply #1
7. Neither paper fires nor gasoline fires melt steel, so ...
So I don't think thats the answer.

Its important to establish when the steel was melted?

During the period WTC was first hit?
Before the building collapsed?
Soon after the building collapsed?
Long after the building collapsed?

Also, was the molten metal steel or aluminum? How much different are the melting temperatures of these 2?

How long would the steel remain molten after it melted?

Did the many witnesses who described molten steel actually see steel that was molten at the time of observation, or steel that had been melted but had hardened?

Can someone answer these questions?

I think they need to be answered before much can be accomplished in this discussion, unless more definative info becomes available.
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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:23 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
Rich Hunt Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 10:12 AM
Response to Reply #8
18. my impression has always been...

that people have misued the world 'molten', that's all. The steel bent or warped, it didn't 'melt', but a lay person might use the words 'melt' or 'molten' and it's fairly excusable. Excusable to any fair-minded person that is. Apparently, to the 'well, you said....' crowd, if you said it ONCE, to a reporter or whoever, then no one should be allowed to forget that you said it.

It reminds me of when I referred a long time ago to people's faces 'melting' off in a nuclear attack - I had read it in some anti-war book, and I was just using it because I was upset, but apparently certain 'flies on the wall' took it literally. Much discourse is INFORMAL - especially verbal or on the 'net. Sometimes your tongue works faster than your brain. Only the most unreasonable and the most fault-finding among us would fail to allow for this.

I think the chiefs of disinformation (who appear to come from a different culture than the rest of us) have difficulty recognizing the difference. They repeat things over and over again...'concrete core', 'molten'. The purpose of this is to 'remind' everyone that someone at such a time said that...ONCE, and now it's a matter of 'record'.

Well, just because someone was once QUOTED as saying 'molten' doesn't make it so.

What is my point in bringing this up? Well, I have some personal experience with propagandists, and they will not allow for such a thing as 'informal discourse' - everything you say, whether in an impromptu tv or newspaper interview or on a message board, is to be taken as 'final' testimony of some sort. These people DO NOT recognize the concept of -context-. If some 'eyewitness' who was distressed or distracted saw some bent steel and said it was 'molten', the 'doctors' of belief will make sure no one ever forgets that he or she said that.

You have to ask yourself - what sort of people and what sort of culture would, four years after the attack, refuse to accept that some people were speaking in an informal context, and that just because something was printed in some paper somewhere does not make it a scientific fact? What sort of person would not allow for...not human fallibility, because that's THEIR phrase, but CONTEXT? Do you see a ruthlessly unforgiving culture at work? I do. Do you see someone who is waiting for people to 'slip up' in public somehow? I do.

Let me sum this up. Here is the script:

Good 9/11 researcher: "We need to look at eyewitness testimony"
Disinfo person: " Well, someone in this-and-such a paper used the word 'molten,
and that is a matter of record. What do you think about that?" (neener neener neener)
(gets lots of people to dig out and repeat these quotes)

Good person: "well, that is just a quote, and it doesn't match the science"
Disinfo: (digs out more articles, more quotes, and recruits or pressures more
zealots to flood and back him up)
"Well, here is a 'scientist' or 'engineer' who DID say it"

THE GOAL IS TO KEEP YOU DISTRACTED, OFF-BALANCE, AND WORKING ALL THE TIME.

The American people have got to get wise. Some domestic group or groups are clearly promoting disinformation all over the place. If anyone at any time made an inaccurate statement, they are there to find it. The purpose is to distract the curious and 'keep them busy'. And then you have to ask yourself : what sort of culture feels 'entitled' to 'keep people busy' like this? What sort of culture is about being everyone else's 'boss' or 'master'?

Well guess what? They can't hide, and they won't get away with this. This unforgiving and 'totalizing' philosophy that informs ALL of their insinuations and methods is very apparent when you think about it. It's called CALVINISM.

In sum: DON'T TAKE THE BAIT. The science is there - right there in the mainstream media. TAKE THE SHORT CUT. What do these tactics and communication styles say about the people who espouse them?


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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 11:26 AM
Response to Reply #18
19. Thank you for saying the above
it speaks a lot of truth.

An additional example of words being taken out of context is the word "explosion", as if on 9/11 it was the very first occurrence of someone describing a loud noise or percussion as an explosion when in no way shape or form were they thinking about explosives creating the "explosion."
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petgoat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 03:53 PM
Response to Reply #19
29. "in no way shape or form were they thinking... "
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 03:54 PM by petgoat
You have the mind-reading plug-in on your crystal ball, do you?

Do you believe those reporting flashes of light on low level floors
were not thinking of explosives? Do you think officials quoted in TV
coverage who used the phrase "secondary explosion" were not thinking
of explosives?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:02 PM
Response to Reply #29
31. Yes. (n/t)
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:13 PM
Response to Reply #18
23. Yes, metal BENDS into pools.
And BENDING metal drips.

Yep, makes perfect sense to me. :eyes:
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paulthompson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:36 PM
Response to Reply #18
25. nice rant, except...
it doesn't square with the facts. We're not talking about just a person or two misusing the word molten and it being taken out of context. We're talking about lots of people talking about literal flowing rivers of melted steel.

In addition to all the above quotes, here are a few more I was sent yesterday:

"A combination of an uncontrolled fire and the structural damage might have been able to bring the building down, some engineers said. But that would not explain steel members in the debris pile that appear to have been partly evaporated in extraordinarily high temperatures, Dr. Barnett said."
NY Times

"In his reporting for "American Ground," Langewiesche explored the shifting debris with construction workers and engineers, documenting the crises and questions as they arose. He crawled through "the pile" with survey parties and descended deep below street level to areas where underground fires still burned and steel flowed in molten streams."

"Amid molten steel, whispers of leaking freon, the potential collapse of the protective 'slurry wall,' and treacherous piles of shifting rubble, Langewiesche uncovered a case study in American resilience."

"in the early days, the streams of molten metal that leaked from the hot cores and flowed down broken walls inside the foundation hole."

The Atlantic Monthly, July/August 2002
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vincent_vega_lives Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-12-05 06:52 PM
Response to Reply #25
119. Perfect example
"We're talking about lots of people talking about literal flowing rivers of melted steel."

How did the observer know it was melted steel? Did they see the source? Take a sample? How do they know it was not the remains of aluminum filing cabinets?
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:02 PM
Response to Reply #18
58. some of the witnesses quoted aren't lay people
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 08:05 PM by philb
and they said molten

and you seem to be one of the group you are describing(spin doctors) providing spin
but no documentation or information.
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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:33 PM
Response to Reply #1
32. best analogy is a coal fire
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:57 PM
Response to Reply #32
35. And, pray tell, what temperature is this coal file?
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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:53 PM
Response to Reply #35
40. 1700 centigrade
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:00 PM
Response to Reply #40
42. "Deep beneath the ground"
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 06:14 PM by stickdog
From your article:

The fire temperature reaches temperatures of 1,700C deep beneath the ground. But the land above is also heated, and at the firefront reaches 350C.

The fire in question has been burning for thousands of years as deep as 250 meters underground.

http://www.answersingenesis.org/creation/v15/i2/mountai...

Experimental work, including laboratory firing and fusion tests on the natural starting materials suggests that temperatures of up to 1700C must have been attained in the burning zones in order to account for these and other alteration effects due to thermal metamorphism.

In addition, the temperature of the fire and its long burning nature have led some scientists to speculate that it's caused by a volcanic intrusion:




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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:06 PM
Response to Reply #42
43. not sure of your point
My point is that when there is large mass of fuel (debris)under a pile of wreckage it is possible for incredibly high temperatures to be reached, similar to a coal fire.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:18 PM
Response to Reply #43
45. My point is that your point is full of it.
Tell me how to make a fire that sustains temperatures well over 2000 F. Please explain what combustibles and venting to use and what type of wreckage to put over it.
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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 12:19 PM
Response to Reply #45
97. here's a documented report of fire producing glowing metal
Edited on Fri Dec-09-05 12:20 PM by Snivi Yllom
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 05:49 PM
Response to Reply #97
101. GLOWING is not MOLTEN.
Edited on Fri Dec-09-05 06:04 PM by stickdog
http://www.commondreams.org/views01/0724-07.htm

The Baltimore Sun has reported that the fire in the train tunnel reached temperatures as high as 1,500 degrees Fahrenheit.

1,500 F is not 2,400 F.
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:08 PM
Response to Reply #32
59. would it melt steel? don't think so
and there is a huge fuel source of high BTU content available, with no way to cut it off.
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spooked911 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 08:36 PM
Response to Original message
3. I don't think there is an official explanation and you're right--
it is strange.

But I don't have a good explanation either.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 08:37 PM
Response to Original message
4. A few comments
Physics professor Steven E. Jones later claims this molten metal is "direct evidence for the use of high-temperature explosives, such as thermite," used to deliberately bring down the WTC towers. He says that without explosives, a falling building would have "insufficient directed energy to result in melting of large quantities of metal."

Thermite creates a very intense and speedy reaction that heats whatever it happens to be attached to. Dr. Jones is implying that anywhere from weeks to five months Thermite or some other chemical was melting steel. This is not possible as the Thermite reaction lasting this long would involve massive quantities (most likely many, many tons). The same goes for any other high temperature reaction.

Regarding the "a falling building would have insufficient directed energy to result in melting of large quantities of metal.". This statement exposes Dr, Jones as a fraud in my view. No one is saying direct energy for the building collapse is responsible for any melting. Even a cursory thought or two about how fires hot enough to melt steel may have occurred brings to mind the combustible material that continued to burn. Any one with A PhD is Physics is smart enough to figure this out if they wanted to. In essence underground fires were created. Underground fires are very difficult to extinguish and get very hot because the heat tends to be poorly transferred away from the fire.

From a scientific perspective there is absolutely nothing amazing about the fires, or that they reached temperatures capable of melting alum or metal. Remember there were 7 basement levels that were filled with combustibles from the collapse.


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dazinith Donating Member (1 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:46 PM
Response to Reply #4
10. how does fire burn without oxygen?
where would a fire under tons and tons of scrap metal get the oxygen necessary to not just stay on fire for months, but actually maintain temperatures in excess of 1000 degrees for months while having water doused on the pile all day and night as well?

unless their was abundent amounts of oxygen fueling the fires then they should've been out a lot quicker right?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:49 AM
Response to Reply #10
16. Why would oxy not be able to get to the fires?
They are under the debris, not in a sealed vault.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:10 PM
Response to Reply #16
22. Less oxygen = cooler fire.
What combustibles burn hot enough to melt steel again, LARED?
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:03 AM
Response to Reply #4
15. What combustibles burn hot enough to melt steel?
Your post exposes YOU as a fraud.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:27 AM
Response to Reply #15
17. Ok Stickdog, let put it on the table
You don't like my answer. Fine, no problem. Tell us all how fires lasted so long and were capable of melting steel.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:08 PM
Response to Reply #17
21. Yes. let's put it on the table.
Tell us all how fires lasted so long and were capable of melting steel.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:35 PM
Response to Reply #21
24. I'll repeat myself in hopes you will actually provide an answer
The fires lasted so long because the WTC basements were about 70 feet deep and filled with combustible materials from the collapse.

The fire were hot enough because underground fire cannot dissipate heat quickly, thus the temperature increases.

I realize you do not agree and have asked you to provide alternative scenario, so it's your turn.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:46 PM
Response to Reply #24
27. I agree that you keep dodging my original question.
What combustibles burn hot enough to melt steel again? Even under pressure, even surrounded by insulation, even under perfect conditions -- WHAT COMBUSTIBLES BURN HOT ENOUGH TO MELT STEEL?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:01 PM
Response to Reply #27
30. You fail to grasp the difference between the
flame temperature of a material and the temperature of a fire. They are not necessarily the same.

As an example, if you place a single charcoal bricket on the grill, lit it and took the temperature after the flame died down you would get a far lower temperature than if you took fifty brickets in a mound lit them and took the temperature.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:55 PM
Response to Reply #30
34. How many hundreds of years did humanity "fail to grasp" this difference?
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 04:59 PM by stickdog
Please tell us all how to build a fire that sustains temperatures well over 2000 F. Or are you a fraud?
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hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:28 PM
Response to Reply #34
36. Since no one has an answer, I guess it is a mystery..
it certainly does not point towards demolition though, wouldn't you think?

Since you can't name a known process or material do you subscribe to mysterious "black" weapons? Just curious.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:55 PM
Response to Reply #36
41. I can think of nothing to explain it occurring naturally.
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 05:56 PM by stickdog
And that's all I've ever claimed on the subject. Just because I don't have an answer doesn't mean I can't spot bullshitters who pretend to have one.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:32 PM
Response to Reply #34
37. Humanity does not have the problem,
you do. I'm sorry if this concept is above you, I really don't know how to explain it any better. Perhaps someone else can take a stab at it.

But, while I'm out of ideas, perhaps you can illuminate me with your notion as to how the fires burned for weeks and the metal got melted.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:49 PM
Response to Reply #37
39. If the process of getting a fire to sustain temperatures well above 2000 F
is so simple, why don't you share it with the class, LARED?

Your continued dodging of this simple question exposes you as a fraud in my view.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:07 PM
Response to Reply #39
44. Maybe this will help you
http://www.abc.net.au/science/news/enviro/EnviroRepubli...

Underground coal fire in Australia

Australia is the home of one of the world's few naturally burning coal seams, Burning Mountain Nature Reserve, in northeastern New South Wales. The burning coal seam extends from the main coalfields of the Hunter Valley.

The fire burns 30 metres underground, moving at the slow rate of one metre south every year. The lack of oxygen underground means the fire burns slowly, and with 6 km of burnt area, the fire is estimated to be about 5,500 years old.

The seam was once exposed to the surface, so it is possible a bushfire may have ignited it, scientists say. Sulphurous smoke comes from fissures in the ground, and sulphur is known to be capable of spontaneous combustion if it is heated.

The fire temperature reaches temperatures of 1,700C deep beneath the ground. But the land above is also heated, and at the firefront reaches 350C. The intense heat on the surface kills off vegetation, leaving a carpet of white sinter, alum and sulphur deposited on the surface through the condensation of the highly acidic gases.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:19 PM
Response to Reply #44
46. So there's a volcanic intrusion under the WTC towers?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:25 PM
Response to Reply #46
47. No, and there isn't one at this coal seam either. (nice try)
http://www.nationalparks.nsw.gov.au/parks.nsf/parkConte...


Early explorers assumed Burning Mountain's billowing smoke and peak of grey, smoldering ash was an active volcano. In fact, the mountain's naturally-burning coal seam, unique in Australia, is thought to have been smoking away for over 5500 years. After a short pleasant walk, you can look down from the viewing platform into the vents where the smoke emerges.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:34 PM
Response to Reply #47
48. OK, so there was a vein of coal burning under the WTC tower?
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 06:41 PM by stickdog
For thousands of years, 300 feet underground?

Come on, LARED. What combustibles would cause such high temperatures? How did a fire burn at well over 2000 F in the WTC basement?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:53 PM
Response to Reply #48
50. Back for more?
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 07:31 PM by LARED
First of all the fires in the referenced article are burring 30 meters below ground (90 feet) not 300 feet. The WTC basement levels were 70 feet deep. The time it burned is immaterial.

We don't know exactly what combustible were available, other than office and construction materials. Who know what other combustible were available in the basements. Oils, gasses, fuels, wood, etc, etc, etc. Again the main issue is that the heat is trapped underground, making the fires hotter.

As a side note we don't even have strong evidence it was steel that was molten. It is quite easy for even experienced people to call molten aluminum, steel or metal speaking plainly about what they saw.

I dunno stickdog, you seem to be chasing a stick for no reason. We know underground fires can be hot enough to melt metals, We know there were very hot underground fires, we know there was an abundance of combustible materials available. And we know there is no other explanations for what was observed. But life is full of choices and if you want to continue to tilt at windmills, have fun
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:58 PM
Response to Reply #50
52. How do you make an underground fire hot enough to melt steel?
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 07:18 PM by stickdog
What combustibles can you use other than coal, LARED? Please just answer this one simple question.

http://www.slate.com/id/2066936 /

Coal fires can reach temperatures of 1200 degrees Fahrenheit {steel melts at over 2200 F}, so water dumped on them evaporates instead of putting them out.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:27 PM
Response to Reply #52
55. I suggest you research yourself.
In the basement of the WTC there was an enormous amount of different materials. Gypsum, wood, paper, just to name a few. Many of these substances will react with each other at high temperatures typically only seen in specific manufacturing process or a laboratory. There are manifold combinations possible, many that release abundant heat as a byproduct. This of course is all outside of what we would call the normal combustion process occurring. This issue is best answered by someone other than me. As an ME, I remember enough chemistry to not ask stupid questions.

But, I digress, the issue you keep skirting is the fact the the fires were underground raising the temperature of whatever was burning.

So do you have any sort of answer as to what caused the fires or the molten metals? Reality is staring you in the face. Step into the light.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:32 PM
Response to Reply #55
63. The REALITY is that an underground fire burning hot enough to
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 08:33 PM by stickdog
melt steel is unprecedented EXCEPT in the case of the interior of a deeply buried coal fire. Humans tried to create just such fires for hundreds and hundreds of years without any success. Your failure to understand as much is alarming and exposes you as a fraud in my estimation.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:49 PM
Response to Reply #63
65. In case you have not noticed, I am hardly concerned
about your estimation of me.

The facts remain that there were underground fires for weeks. There was some sort of molten metal in the basements. I've offered reasonable explanation regarding how I think it happened, offered evidence that underground fires can get hot enough to melt steel and why. Offered some thoughts on what sort of combustibles were present and how they may have contributed to the temperatures.

You on the other hand still have no explanation for observed objective reality other than duh! Do you have any explanation? Anything?



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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:03 PM
Response to Reply #65
68. Really? What combustibles can sustain temperatures over 2000 F?
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 09:04 PM by stickdog
How can one create a fire that burns that hot for weeks? These are simple questions. All I want to know is what you think was down there that kept burning hot enough to melt steel.

I realize that fires kept burning for months, but the emissions they gave off prove that -- at least in general -- these were typically the sort of low temperature, smouldering fires that one would expect. However, the 2400 F temperature readings and the molten steel suggest otherwise. You seem to think that there is a simple explanation for all this. I just want to hear it.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:06 PM
Response to Reply #68
69. If you answer this perhaps you will get it.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:37 PM
Response to Reply #69
71. Short answer: Under almost ANY conceivable conditions, coal fires
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 09:58 PM by stickdog
can NOT burn hot enough to melt steel. This is obviously proven by the fact that coal was burned for hundreds of years but no one could ever get it to burn even nearly hot enough to melt steel. Read about the invention of the electric furnance here:

http://www.usgennet.org/usa/topic/preservation/science/...

Centralia coal fire measured at 540 C:

http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2004AM/finalprogram/abstract_...

(The melting point of steel is over 1300 F.)
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #71
72. So how did the coal fire I referenced get hot enough to
melt steel.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 10:02 PM
Response to Reply #72
73. It didn't. As I said, the temperature was not measured directly, but
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 10:42 PM by stickdog
tenuously ASSUMED from an arguable examination of geological artifacts.

Please try to find any other reference to ANY naturally or randomly occurrring combustible fire burning even nearly that hot.

The Centralia coal fire was measured at 540 C ( http://gsa.confex.com/gsa/2004AM/finalprogram/abstract_... ), for example, and it takes over 1300 C melt steel.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 10:14 PM
Response to Reply #73
74. The article I posted said 1700 C. It said nothing about
geological artifacts.

Again you are avoiding the point. How did the coal fires get that hot underground. How do any coal fires get even to 1000 C underground? The reality is what it is, and you have no response to it.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 10:50 PM
Response to Reply #74
75. The article you posted doesn't know its head from its ass.
Humans knew how to dig fire pits for thousands of years, but no one EVER built a fire even NEARLY hot enough to melt iron, despite the fact that doing so would have led to riches and military superiority beyond compare. That is the REALITY. A single article citing a single indirect GEOLOGICAL measurement doesn't change that REALITY, and the fact that you continue to deny that REALITY exposes you as fraud.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 05:40 AM
Response to Reply #75
76. Again you are avoiding the point.
How did the coal fires get that hot underground. How do any coal fires get even to 1000 C underground? The reality is what it is, and you have no response to it.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 02:33 PM
Response to Reply #76
78. 1000 C ain't 1300 C.
Coal ain't office supplies.

90 feet ain't 300 feet.

A street in Manhattan ain't a mountain.

A fire that burns for 6000 years ain't a fire that's been burning for few days.

Direct temperature measurements sure ain't indirect approximations extrapolated from geological artifacts.

Finally, you still have NO EARTHLY CLUE how to make a fire that burns hot enough to melt steel. None whatsoever.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:55 PM
Response to Reply #78
84. I have already explained it a number of times, yet you cannot
explain according to your understanding of the thermodynamics how underground coal fires cannot be at 1000C. Yet they are.

Just admit it stickdog, you don't have a clue about why underground fires can be hotter than the combustion temperature of a material.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 04:09 PM
Response to Reply #84
87. OK, "thermodynamics" boy. What's the maximum directly measured
temperature of a combustible fire?

It's a simple question. Why can't you answer it?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 07:14 PM
Response to Reply #87
89. Actually it's quite a complicated question
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 10:08 PM
Response to Reply #89
91. That's NOT the temperature of a fire, but of a flame.
A flame fueled by natural gas and burned with exactly the right amount of oxygen (at the stoichiometric ratio).

Once again, if it's so easy to make a fire hot enough to melt steel, why don't you simply tell us how to do it?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 10:32 PM
Response to Reply #91
94. I've explained why three times already. Sorry if you don't understand (n/t
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ROH Donating Member (521 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 06:10 PM
Response to Reply #94
102. Well, no, you have not explained even once. (n/t)
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AZCat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 07:50 PM
Response to Reply #71
90. I know I'm hopping in the middle of this discussion...
and may have missed something important, but coal certainly does get hot enough to melt steel under certain conditions. Combustion temperatures when using pulverised bituminous coal can reach 1700 degrees Celsius, and can even get up to 2000 degrees Celsius if a cyclone fired wet boiler is used.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 10:14 PM
Response to Reply #90
92. Yes, a cyclone fired wet boiler can do the trick.
All I'm trying to point out is that 2400 F is a ridiculously high temperature for ANY naturally and/or randomly occurring combustible fire -- underground, covered by debris, well-insulated or not.

If I'm saying something that isn't true, then where are any examples of any direct measurements of any other fires burning so hot?
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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:08 PM
Response to Reply #55
79. i dont think there was any melted steel at all
I think the witness may have seen something he thought was steel but was somethign else, perhaps burned wood, or alumninum.

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:11 PM
Response to Reply #79
81. Yes, it was probably pools of molten wood. (nt)
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Christophera Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 02:15 AM
Response to Reply #81
95. Newcasts & Remodel After The Bombing, Special Fire Proof Coating
Edited on Fri Dec-09-05 02:16 AM by Christophera
I watched the newswcasts carefully in 1993 following the basement bombing. Towards the end a newscaster stated that the steel columns had been coated with a special fireproofing, in case there was any further terrorism.

Ironic.
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rman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 01:20 PM
Response to Reply #79
98. People are amazingly creative in coming up with assumptions
to back up the official story.
If you need that many assumptions to make a theory seem plausible, it means the theory is full of holes.

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Christophera Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 11:33 PM
Response to Reply #98
105. Assumptions Like: If You Tell Me Jet Fuel Melts Steel, I Assume It's True.
because you are powerful. That would be the public of course, confronting the official story.
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rman Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 07:19 AM
Response to Reply #105
107. or in this case: "there was no molten steel"
which, regardless of any explanations as to how the molten steel came to be, is completely opposite of all reports.
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AlienSpaceBat Donating Member (87 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 08:01 AM
Response to Reply #55
110. Biggest underground fire in transportation history
Saw this with my own eyes when it happened. The Fire brigades had to leave the tankers of high octane gasoline to burn on their own, in a railway tunnel open at both ends (long tunnel though) and with ceiling vents. 1,000,000 litres of hydrocarbon fuel.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Summit_tunnel_fire

Look at the photo. Ceiling bricks were vitrified and slagged onto the tankers, but the rolling stock itself is intact afterwards.

If this fully documented fire can't produce molten puddles of iron & steel, there has to be a pretty special explanation forthcoming for the WTC.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 08:47 AM
Response to Reply #110
111. Actually it raises a far more interesting question
If Ceiling bricks were vitrified and slagged onto the tankers how come there was no molten steel to be found?

I have a few ideas, but am interested in what others might say.
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Make7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 10:14 AM
Response to Reply #110
112. ...melts metal.
In the clearup operation afterwards, small globules of metal were found on the ground surrounding shaft 9 - these had been melted from the tanker walls, swept up with the exhaust gases, and dropped out onto the grass.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Summit_tunnel_fire

If they had not been "swept up with the exhaust gases", where would they have gone?
-Make7
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AlienSpaceBat Donating Member (87 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 11:10 AM
Response to Reply #112
113. Its the rolling stock I was referring to ...
The stuff that's made of iron and steel. The fire burned out of control for hours with massive volumes of fuel, but the rails and the rolling stock were intact.

It doesn't say, unfortunately, what kind of metal formed the globules - there must have been many kinds of metal - aluminium in the valves & pipes, copper in wiring, etc, which is readily meltable by these kinds of fires.

What is noticeable straight away though is that the tanks & chassis did not lose integrity and slump to the floor, despite the heating which must have been many many timers greater than what happened at WTC. Ergo, the temperature was nowhere near the melting point of steel - it didn't get hot enough to greatly soften steel.
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Make7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 12:09 PM
Response to Reply #113
114. There was plenty of aluminum at the WTC site.
The reported molten metal at Ground Zero could very well have been aluminum which, according to this source, has a melting point of 1220oF.

A source from the original post indicates that the temperatures reached at some Ground Zero "hot spots" were high enough to melt aluminum:

  • AVIRIS data collected on September 16, 2001, revealed a number of thermal hot spots in the region where the WTC buildings collapsed. Analysis of the data indicated temperatures greater than 800oF in these hot spots (some over 1300oF) . Over 3 dozen hot spots of varying size and temperature were present in the core zone of the WTC. By September 23, most of these fires that were observable from an aircraft had been eliminated or reduced in intensity.
http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2001/ofr-01-0429/

-Make7
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AlienSpaceBat Donating Member (87 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 12:14 PM
Response to Reply #114
115. Fair point ..!
Has anyone actually said what kind of metal was molten ?

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Make7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sun Dec-11-05 12:53 PM
Response to Reply #115
116. I usually see it claimed as steel, however...
...these reports seem to be based on eye-witness accounts. There haven't been any tests done on the molten metal, as far as I know.

So, I guess the first question that comes to mind is whether or not it is possible to tell, just from visual inspection, what kind of molten metal one is looking at, and if it is, did the people who reported seeing the molten metal have the experience and/or ability to do this?

The next relevant question might be: Is it possible to determine the type of metal from a picture? Perhaps using spectrographic analysis of some kind. In theory, it seems possible, but to be accurate the original light from the object might be required. I'm not really sure, but it might be worth exploring.
-Make7

:hi: Once again, welcome to DU - hope to see more of you around here, you seem to post infrequently.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:39 PM
Response to Reply #47
49. More
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 06:56 PM by stickdog
http://pub-geo.tuwien.ac.at/showentry.php3?ID=500〈 ;=2&head=%3Cbody%3E%3Chr%3E%3Ch2%3EPublikationen%202004%3C%2Fh2%3E%3Chr%3E

Two simulated coal fires were studied during a field experiment at DLR, Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany. The results indicated that the inner temperature of such a coal fire is above 1000C. The surface radiant temperatures of a coal fire range from 300 to 900C.

The kind of steel used to build the WTC towers melts are what temperature, LARED? You do realize that coal fires (like blast furnaces) are basically blackbodies and that this special property allows them to burn so hot, don't you, LARED?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 06:54 PM
Response to Reply #49
51. above 1000C?
How much above?
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:00 PM
Response to Reply #51
53. It's the internal temperature of the glowing blackbody that is a coal
fire, LARED!

But of course you would know that, wouldn't you? Unless you were a fraud, of course.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:30 PM
Response to Reply #53
57. I dunno, I sort of read it as the actual temp of the coal inside was
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 08:26 PM by LARED
above 1000C because they were only able to measure the surface at over 900.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:36 PM
Response to Reply #57
64. Yes, the surface temp ranged from 350 to 900 C, SUGGESTING that
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 08:37 PM by stickdog
the interior temperature of the coal was over 1000 C.

Once again I have to ask you, WHAT COMBUSTIBLES SUSTAIN A FIRE OF OVER 2000 F (other than the interior of deeply buried coal fires)? Can you answer this simple question with a single example or not?
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:51 PM
Response to Reply #64
66. Why don't you explain why coal
can burn at temps hot enough to melt steel when underground :)
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:24 PM
Response to Reply #66
70. A coal fire is a good approximation of a blackbody. A blackbody
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 09:26 PM by stickdog
is a body that absorbs all the radiation that falls on it. Most bodies are NOT good approximations of blackbodies and therefore reflect a portion of the radiation that falls on them. Non-blackbodies (basically everything that burns other than coal) emit 10% - 90% of the energy that a coal fire emits.

Coal fires generate almost no UV radiation and lots of IR radiation, resulting in hotter fires.

In addition, 1700 C is an outrageously high temperature for even a coal fire. Nobody has ever experimentally measured a coal fire at even nearly this temperature. The 1700 C value you guys are throwing around was arrived at indirectly by examining geological artifacts that may have been the result of any of a number of geological phenomena.

From:

http://www.ears.nl/EARShome/projects/txtco.htm



From:

http://pub-geo.tuwien.ac.at/showentry.php3?ID=500&lang=...

The surface radiant temperatures of a coal fire range from 300 to 900C.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 05:34 PM
Response to Reply #30
38. I need to edit this
You fail to grasp the difference between the flame combustion temperature of a material and the temperature of a fire. They are not necessarily the same.




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petgoat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:15 PM
Response to Reply #38
82. The coal point is moot unless you're going to maintain that
the molten steel fell into some supposed WTC coal
bunkers, or maintain that oil-soaked particle
board, rugs, computer cases, and telephones somehow
morphed into some kind of plastic charcoal.

There wasn't any coal in the WTC.

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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:01 PM
Response to Original message
6. Have you seen my post on the Tritium readings by UC Berkeley?
I do not know what the implications are but I posted the link to the report, and what tritium generally is used for.

http://www.democraticunderground.com/discuss/duboard.ph...
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hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:43 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. The Berkley report says that...
WTC hosted several law-enforcement agencies such as ATF, CIA, US Secret Service and US Customs. The ATF office had two weapon vaults in WTC Building 6. Also 63 Police Officers, possibly carrying handguns, died in the attack. The weaponry containing tritium sights was therefore a likely and significant source of tritium.


I know you are hinting nuclear weapons but forget about it - the amount tritium would be dwarfed by other fission products, none of which were detected.
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-06-05 10:47 PM
Response to Reply #9
11. was there a test for other fission products?
did we ever decide what caused the car gas tanks to explode blocks from WTC?
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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 01:08 AM
Response to Reply #11
13. I found an ongoing database of air contaminants. It is a little bothersome
to use though. Besides, some of the Data (NIEHS) is restricted access only.
I looked at soil as a test and found asbestos for example only to be high on one day, and that was quite a few days after.

http://wtc.hs.columbia.edu/wtc/wtc.aspx

From the listbox, select the data that you wish to query. At present we have the following options available:

"AIRS"

"Public Post 09/11"

"NIEHS Center Data"

"Public Post 09/11 & NIEHS Center Data"

Note that at the moment the "NIEHS Center Data" and "Public Post 09/11 & NIEHS Center Data" options are available only to authorized users.

AIRS has Ambient Air data from Jan 1970 to December 2004 for New York City and New Jersey. The data in AIRS are not summarized and contain all actual readings. These data include readings collected from Ambient Air monitors setup by the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation (NYSDEC) in response to the WTC disaster.

The Post 09/11 database contains environmental data we received from USEPA, NYSDEC and NYSDOH. These data were collected from monitors set up in response to the WTC disaster. Please note that ASBESTOS data for NYSDEC can be found only in Post 09/11 and will not be found in AIRS.

The NIEHS Center database has data from the following five NIEHS Centers:

University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ)

New York University (NYU)

University of North Carolina (UNC)

Johns Hopkins School of Public Health (JHSPH)

Columbia University - Mailman School of Public Health (CU-MSPH)
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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 12:52 AM
Response to Original message
12. Here is an interesting pdf analysis of the temperature inside the building
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 12:53 AM by rumpel
based on collected steel.
http://wtc.nist.gov/media/P3MechanicalandMetAnalysisofS... 4.

which aparently was overuled in the final report

on edit: while the buildings were still standing.
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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 12:28 PM
Response to Reply #12
20. I found an interesting comment in the report
All recovered WTC 1 perimeter truss seats below the 96 floor were
deformed downwards; above this floor deformation was random.


Meaning the Controlled Demolition guys need to explain how those truss seats got bent downwards, rather than failing by shear due to the columns being blown out if explosives were used.
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paulthompson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:37 PM
Response to Original message
26. Important question no one has addressed yet
So, do any of the official reports address this in any way? Does anyone know?
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 02:48 PM
Response to Reply #26
28. I haven't seen a single one.
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petgoat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 04:41 PM
Response to Original message
33. A related issue is the FEMA Appendix C Report
which was done by three PhD's at Worcester Polytechnical Institute and is discussed at Jim Hoffman's
911research site.

An article by them in Journal of Metals is also referrenced there.

Their steel samples from WTC7 and one of the towers show extreme sulfidative erosion that turned
a steel I-Beam into swiss cheese and scrolls of steel.




They can not explain the source of the sulfur in this extremely high-temperature reaction, and
their report concludes with a call for further research. I have no information that further
research was ever done, and as far as I know NIST doesn't even mention this report.

http://911research.wtc7.net/wtc/evidence/metallurgy/WTC...

See also this page from the Worcester Institute, "The "Deep Mystery" of Melted Steel"

http://www.wpi.edu/News/Transformations/2002Spring/stee...

Here's a picture from the JOM article:



http://www.tms.org/pubs/journals/JOM/0112/Biederman/Bie...
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Bouvet_Island Donating Member (227 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 09:56 PM
Response to Reply #33
104. I noticed this,
I think though it is possibly related to the other question discussed here, the high temperatures in this fire. At around 1000-1300 degrees gypsum will release I think SO2, which will dissolve in water and be corrosive.

That aint an expert opinion, but it seems an obvious consequence of the high temperatures in question here.

Another rather obvious consequence is that any steel melting, it seems it would be "doped" with the dust and other material in question. After two weeks it would be highly polluted, I am at a full loss though what this would mean for melting point.

If there was applied large quantities of thermite as some people suggest, the melted steel would be mixed with considerable amounts of aluminium, the paper posted at the bottom suggests 1.5 ton thermite -> maybe (don't know) 700 kg aluminium/core column segment. I am not advocating this theory, my point is valid without this theory as well, there were obviously a hundred ton or so of aluminium in there already, and probably concentrated in a particular layer. Aluminium have a melting point of 660C, boils at 2400 so it would not disappear. Long as that fire would be over 660, that aluminium would be melted and blended/react with other material.

Again The obvious question is why there is no evidence available, it is of such obvious interest to science that it seems incredible there is not available samples of it.

This Fire is not comparable to a coal fire imo. First it was burning inside a giant concrete box. The layer at the top would have to be rather porous (insulating),and on the top of that again all that dust setting must mean it seemingly can't have had very good air access from the top, at least initially. The bottom layers, they must have been rather compact after having a category 2 earthquake step on them. And mind that all the gupsum in the floors below the fire would release its considerable H2o at a temperature of 180C +a penalty for pressure. I think this would work to inhibit oxygen access there, though it seems this effect would also be limited to maybe the first few days, after which the temperature would have evened out and dried all the gypsum.

I suspect the oxygen to this fire must have come from underground sources like the tubes and sewers, and other tunnels. Hard to say much about it though with so little to go on.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:22 PM
Response to Original message
54. For Paul Thompson
Edited on Wed Dec-07-05 08:01 PM by stickdog
http://www.osha.gov/Publications/WTC/dangerous_worksite...

Another danger involved the high temperature of twisted steel pulled from the rubble. Underground fires burned at temperatures up to 2,000 degrees. As the huge cranes pulled steel beams from the pile, safety experts worried about the effects of the extreme heat on the crane rigging and the hazards of contact with the hot steel. And they were concerned that applying water to cool the steel could cause a steam explosion that would propel nearby objects with deadly force. Special expertise was needed. OSHA called in structural engineers from its national office to assess the situation. They recommended a special handling procedure, including the use of specialized rigging and instruments to reduce the hazards.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/september11/oneyearon/story/0...

Maximum heat of fires, in degrees fahrenheit, at World Trade Center site: 2,300

Number of days underground fires at World Trade Centre continued to burn: 69


http://www.occupationalhazards.com/articles/4231

Thermal measurements taken by helicopter each day showed underground temperatures ranging from 400 degrees F to more than 2,800 degrees F due to the ongoing underground fires. The heat melted the soles of workers' shoes and it became a safety concern for the search-and-rescue dogs. Many were not outfitted with protective booties. More than one dog suffered serious injuries and at least three died while working at Ground Zero. The underground fire was "extinguished" on Dec. 19.

http://www.asse.org/groundzero.htm

The debris pile at Ground Zero was always tremendously hot. Thermal measurements taken by helicopter each day showed underground temperatures ranging from 400F to more than 2,800F. The surface was so hot that standing too long in one spot softened (and even melted) the soles of our safety shoes. Steel toes would often heat up and become intolerable. This heat was also a concern for the search-and-rescue dogs used at the site. Many were not outfitted with protective booties (Photo 13). More than one suffered serious injuries and at least three died while working at Ground Zero. The underground fire burned for exactly 100 days and was finally declared extinguished on Dec. 19, 2001.

http://www.casperstartribune.net/articles/2005/01/28/ne...

Renner describes the underground fires as sort of living, breathing monsters that inhale and exhale air through surface cracks and old mine shafts. Efforts to put out coal seam fires -- piling enough dirt on top to cut off oxygen, injecting grout into seams to isolate them, and flooding the burning fissures with water -- have largely failed. But now that he has them identified, Renner is searching for better and more cost-effective ways to tame some of the fires.

That mission has brought him down a barely passable muddy road and up this outcrop to drill a checkerboard of holes into a fire that has been burning underground for at least four decades. Unsuccessful attempts were made in the 1960s to put it out by digging part of the coal seam up and dumping dirt on it. This time Renner is pumping foam into the depths of a fire that he has pinpointed with satellite coordinates, aerial infrared imaging and digital temperature measures.

"It's like a big science fair kind of thing," he said as he and his drilling contractors injected vent pipes with the same foam used to extinguish the smoldering rubble of the World Trade Center in the aftermath of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks.

The new foaming agents and saline injections work better than older methods, but are often too expensive for an abandoned mine program that has a total annual budget of just over $2 million and faces a budget hit. A federal coal mining fee that helps to fund the abandoned mine program expires in June and may not be reauthorized.


http://wardgriffin.com/fire.htm

Jose Maldonado has all the basic tools: a ladder truck to lift him up and out toward the fire; a pumper to ensure nearly 800 gallons a minute is poured onto it; and his respirator, boots and other protective gear to guard against the roiling waves of heat and toxic smoke. But as dawn turns into day and day into night, it is hard to tell if the 12 hours of labor put in by Mr. Maldonado, a barrel-chested firefighter from the Bronx, has made even a bit of difference. On detail at the World Trade Center site, he is helping fight no ordinary blaze. His assignment is to somehow put out what firefighting experts are calling the longest commercial building fire in United States history.

As in a stubborn coal mine fire, the combustion taking place deep below the surface is in many places not a fire at all. Instead, oxygen is charring the surfaces of buried fuels in a slow burn more akin to what is seen in the glowing coals of a raked-over campfire. But the scale of the trade center burning is vast, with thousands of plastic computers, acres of flammable carpet, tons of office furniture and steel and reservoirs of hydraulic oil and other fuels piled upon one another.

...

Progress has been made, to be sure. Thermal aerial photographs and videotape shot in the days just after the attack show a nearly constant field of heat across large swaths of the 16-acre site. An aerial video shot late last week showed an underground blaze now confined largely to where the two towers once stood.

...

"When you have a huge mass of materials deeply buried like this, it's sort of analogous to the Centralia mine fire," said Dr. Thomas J. Ohlemiller, a chemical engineer and fire expert at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Gaithersburg, Md. "Very little heat is lost, so the reaction can keep going at relatively low temperatures, provided you have a weak supply of oxygen coming through the debris."

...

One idea that was accepted came from a company in Lynchburg, Va., that sold the city about 3,000 gallons of its product Pyrocool, which, when mixed with water, is intended to absorb heat from a fire until the temperature drops below the point of combustion. A total of 750,000 gallons of the diluted Pyrocool was spread over ground zero in late September and early October, at a cost of about $120,000.
Pyrocool's operations director, Eddie Tyler, said the substance had been used to quickly douse thousands of fires worldwide over the past eight years.

When round-the-clock Pyrocool treatment at the trade center was stopped after a week, Chief Blaich said, there was noticeable progress. But the fires were still burning, in large part because of difficulty in getting the substance down through the debris pile and directly onto hot spots. In a hot flaming fire, many toxic chemicals are incinerated, with little given off except carbon soot, carbon dioxide, water vapor and other fairly innocuous emissions. But the relatively low temperatures of the trade center fires mean that traces of dozens of toxic chemicals and heavy metals are carried into the air, including benzene, a cancer-causing compound released when fuels are burned, and styrene, a gas emitted by burning plastic. At times the chemicals in the air at the site reach dangerous levels, particularly when fire flares up, as it did on Nov. 8.


http://www.cbsnews.com/stories/2001/12/19/archive/main3...

"You couldn't even begin to imagine how much water was pumped in there," said Tom Manley of the Uniformed Firefighters Association, the largest fire department union. "It was like you were creating a giant lake."

The fires were fueled by almost everything inside the towers, from documents to office furniture. As demolition and rescue crews toiled to clear the debris, air pockets would open up, allowing fresh oxygen to cause hot spots to flare up. Manley said at any given time there were at least 10 firefighters working the hose lines and more when needed.

"You always had at least 10, but if you had numerous fires going you brought in more," he said.

Pataki also said Wednesday that clearing the site is expected to take six to nine more months, with work focused on the seven floors of compacted rubble underground. Workers at the site continue to search closely for human remains. For the 75 firefighters working at the site daily, knocking the fires down makes the job of finding remains a bit easier but it does little to help them emotionally.
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dailykoff Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 07:28 PM
Response to Original message
56. A couple of points about thermite:
1) Thermite doesn't need an oxygen supply to burn, as it contains its own oxygen:

"Thermite contains its own supply of oxygen, and does not require any external source such as air. Consequently, it cannot be smothered and may ignite in any environment, given sufficient initial heat. It will burn just as well while underwater, for example, and cannot even be extinguished with water, as water sprayed on a thermite reaction will instantly be boiled into steam."


2) One of the byproducts of a thermite reaction is molten metal, which is produced by the thermite itself:

"Although the reactants are stable at room temperature ... they burn with an extremely intense exothermic reaction. The products emerge as liquids due to the high temperatures reached, with iron oxide, up to 2500C (4500F)"

from: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Thermite


So the high temperatures, molten metal, and ability to burn without oxygen appear to be characteristics of thermite reactions.

Unfortunately, that doesn't explain why the stuff would still be burning weeks after the demolitions.
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:24 PM
Response to Reply #56
60. they sprayed a foam product on the pile but still it burned a while
if there was extra thermite around unexploded would fire cause it to burn?

we might be back to deciding whether the molten metal observed was molten at the time of observation, or just clearly melted in the past.

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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:25 PM
Response to Reply #56
61. Mind if I ask a question
Unfortunately, that doesn't explain why the stuff would still be burning weeks after the demolitions.

How is that unfortunate? It basically tells you that thermite was not responsible. That is a good thing. No?
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 08:32 PM
Response to Reply #61
62. I'm not aware of any evidence that rules out your hypothesis of paper or
the hypothesis of thermite.

what type of cap are you suggesting that allowed air in, but didn't let heat out by conduction through air or steel or concrete or etc.

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LARED Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-07-05 09:00 PM
Response to Reply #62
67. I'm not suggesting any sort of cap
I see no problem with air getting to the fires in the basement. There are literally thousands of paths for it to get there. I would assume the heat was transferred mainly by conduction. Did you mean convection?

As far as thermite is concerned, it is a very energetic reaction (that's why it's hot). It burns for only a short time. To have thermite burning for 6 weeks would requires literally many tons. The simple truth is that thermite had nothing to do with the fires burning for weeks.

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JackRiddler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 10:41 AM
Response to Original message
77. Come on people, red herring
Explosives do not cause underground fires.

All fuel in the buildings would pool at the bottom. Once ignited, this causes a fire under pressure and a cauldron effect. Over days and weeks, this would melt metals.

The molten steel - if in fact it was molten steel and not aluminum - is compatible with any collapse/demolition hypothesis and therefore proves nothing.

(Another red herring is the "seismic spikes.")

Want evidence for demolitions? Look at the squibs, damn it. Their regularity and explosive force, sending core column pieces rocketing out. The pyroclastic effects, the mushrooming clouds. The speed of collapse. The size of the dust cloud at given times, given its presumed density. Look for signatures of explosives in the spectroscopy of recovered materials. Look at 7.

The entire argument for demolition was laid out more than a year ago at these three sites, and has no need of red herrings:

wtc7.net
911research.wtc7.net
911review.com

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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:10 PM
Response to Reply #77
80. Yes, it's a comparative red herring.
However, a fire with a temperature directly measured above 2400 F is just another 9/11 record breaker.
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JackRiddler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:39 PM
Response to Reply #80
83. What's typical of underground fires?
I don't know, but some of those suckers smolder for decades. In this case, you would have had a smaller patch of "earth" but a lot more refined fuel than just coal in the ground.

What's an explanation for the heat other than the cauldron effect of a long-running fire? Explosives would have directed the energy into blowing things apart, not heating them up on this scale. All the dust (whatever the process that produced it) should have snuffed out any fires. The only hypothesis that makes sense (unless you have a better one) is that a fire ignited in the tons of assorted fuels that would have pooled at the bottom of the Ground Zero pile within just a few minutes of the collapse.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 04:05 PM
Response to Reply #83
86. 2400 F is NOT typical of ANY fire caused by combustibles.
Edited on Thu Dec-08-05 04:05 PM by stickdog
JR, mankind knew about firepits and all sorts of fuel -- including coal -- for thousands of years, yet NOBODY ever managed to build a fire hot enough to melt iron until well after 1850.

I don't HAVE a fucking theory, but I'd like a better explanation than the typical 9/11 "ahistorical shit happens" cop out.
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JackRiddler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 06:03 PM
Response to Reply #86
88. yes but
We're not talking about fire pits.

We're talking about an underground fire, on a much smaller scale but comparable (perhaps) to the decades-long fires at coal mines etc. These take place under different pressure conditions than fires in the atmosphere and I'd like to know if anyone understands the physics. Perhaps it's not so unusual that these should reach such temperatures.

Again, explosives are not designed to cause underground fires in the rubble, are they? The question of what caused the fire at Ground Zero after collapse seems to be seperate from what caused the collapse itself.
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 10:16 PM
Response to Reply #88
93. What makes the WTC basement different from a huge firepit?
Seriously, I'd really like to know.
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Make7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 07:17 AM
Response to Reply #86
96. Nobody?
stickdog wrote:
mankind knew about firepits and all sorts of fuel -- including coal -- for thousands of years, yet NOBODY ever managed to build a fire hot enough to melt iron until well after 1850.

Really?

Developments in China

Archaeologists and historians debate whether bloomery-based ironworking ever spread to China from the West. Around 500 BC, however, metalworkers in the southern state of Wu developed an iron smelting technology that would not be practiced in Europe until late medieval times. In Wu, iron smelters achieved a temperature of 1130C, hot enough to be considered a blast furnace. At this temperature, iron combines with 4.3% carbon and melts. As a liquid, iron can be cast into molds, a method far less laborious than individually forging each piece of iron from a bloom.

Cast iron is rather brittle and unsuitable for striking implements. It can, however, be decarburized to steel or wrought iron by heating it in air for several days. In China, these ironworking methods spread northward, and by 300 BC, iron was the material of choice throughout China for most tools and weapons. A mass grave in Hebei province, dated to the early third century BC, contains several soldiers buried with their weapons and other equipment. The artifacts recovered from this grave are variously made of wrought iron, cast iron, malleabilized cast iron, and quench-hardened steel, with only a few, probably ornamental, bronze weapons.

During the Han Dynasty (202 BCAD 220), Chinese ironworking achieved a scale and sophistication not reached in the West until the eighteenth century. In the first century, the Han government established ironworking as a state monopoly and built a series of large blast furnaces in Henan province, each capable of producing several tons of iron per day. By this time, Chinese metallurgists had discovered how to puddle molten pig iron, stirring it in the open air until it lost its carbon and became wrought iron. (In Chinese, the process was called chao, literally, stir-frying.)

Also during this time, Chinese metallurgists had found that wrought iron and cast iron could be melted together to yield an alloy of intermediate carbon content, that is, steel. According to legend, the sword of Liu Bang, the first Han emperor, was made in this fashion. Some texts of the era mention "harmonizing the hard and the soft" in the context of ironworking; the phrase may refer to this process.

India

Perhaps as early as 300 BC, although certainly by AD 200, high quality steel was being produced in southern India by what Europeans would later call the crucible technique. In this system, high-purity wrought iron, charcoal, and glass were mixed in crucibles and heated until the iron melted and absorbed the carbon. The resulting high-carbon steel, called پولاد (puld) in Persian and wootz by later Europeans, was exported throughout much of Asia.


-Make7
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 05:48 PM
Response to Reply #96
100. And what is the melting point of iron, pray tell? (nt)
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Make7 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 05:19 AM
Response to Reply #100
106. 1538 degrees Centigrade
Edited on Sat Dec-10-05 05:26 AM by Make7
Iron
Atomic Number:           26               Atomic Radius:     124.1 pm
Atomic Symbol: Fe Melting Point: 15380C
Atomic Weight: 55.847 Boiling Point: 28610C
Electron Configuration: [Ar]4s23d6 Oxidation States: 3, 2
http://periodic.lanl.gov/elements/26.html

That is the melting point for the pure element Iron. However, that is not necessarily the temperature needed to the melt iron ore to actually produce Iron.

In the later years of the Zhou Dynasty (ca 550 BC), a new iron manufacturing capability began because of a highly developed kiln technology. Producing blast furnaces capable of temperatures exceeding 1300 K, the Chinese developed the manufacture of cast, or pig iron.

If iron ores are heated with carbon to 1420-1470 K, a molten liquid is formed, an alloy of about 96.5% iron and 3.5% carbon. This product is strong, can be cast into intricate shapes, but is too brittle to be worked, unless the product is decarburized to remove most of the carbon. The vast majority of Chinese iron manufacture, from the Zhou dynasty onward, was of cast iron. Iron, however, remained a pedestrian product, used by farmers for hundreds of years, and did not really affect the nobility of China until the Qin dynasty (ca 221 BC).


1420-14700K = 1147-11970C

Early progress in the Melting of Iron.
According to history, cast iron was first produced succesfully by the Chinese 800-700 B.C.(1) Even though iron was produced many centuries before, it apparently could not be cast because the furnaces were incapable of producing the required temperatures. However, the Chinese, as pointed out by Simpson(1), "had developed melting equipment capable of producing greater draft than hitherto had been possible".
Another reason for the succes of the Chinese in being able to produce cast iron, as mentioned by Simpson 1), was that they reduced iron oxide by heating in the presence of an exess amount of carbon, apparently in the form of charcoal. This procedure resulted in a soft, pure iron with a melting point of 15300C (27860F). The iron was then carburized, reducing its melting point to about 11700C (21380F) thereby making it easier to melt in their high draft furnaces.
Additional references indicate that the Chinese used some high phosphorus coal along with high phosphorus iron ore as charge materials (1,2). These materials, by lowering melting temperatures, reduced the amount of blast needed to melt the iron.

From these early beginnings, the interest in cast iron continued to grow. Many applications for this "new cast metal" were made possible by improvements in melting equipment and techniques as well as great progress in the art of molding. Several engineering applications employed cast iron from time to time, including iron chain suspension bridges, the first of which were constructed by the Chinese in 56 A.D. (2) However, iron was not generally cast in what might be called "substantial quantities" in Europe untill the fourteenth century A.D. (1).


-Make7
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philb Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-13-05 06:38 AM
Response to Reply #100
120. melting point of iron and steel are extremely different
Melting point of iron isn't relevant here
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stickdog Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-13-05 07:55 AM
Response to Reply #120
121. My point was simply that there's no evidence that the ancient
Chinese ever made fires hot enough to actually MELT iron OR steel, just to WORK iron better than their European contemporaries.
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petgoat Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-08-05 03:56 PM
Response to Reply #77
85. Jack, I would appreciate the long-timers' thoughts on the question
of what do we do now, and what is the best use of our energies.

(Answered not necessarily in this limited forum; perhaps on one
of the more heavily-trafficked sites.)

It is very easy to get obsessed with interesting puzzles and
minutiae, and most of the activists I know are working so hard
and spread so thin they have no time to sit down and formulate
goals and strategies.

I haven't even had time to read important work that's already been
published, and yet I roam the net looking for the latest breaking
stuff. Maybe now that Helen Thomas has mentioned PNAC in public
and the Voice has a 9/11 cover story it's time for us to turn
from ferreting out the truth to agitating for reopened investigations?






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Name removed Donating Member (0 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 01:35 PM
Response to Reply #77
99. Deleted message
Message removed by moderator. Click here to review the message board rules.
 
hack89 Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 09:30 AM
Response to Reply #99
108. But how much molten steel would thermite create..
if you were just burning narrow strips out of each column? For arguments sake, if each of the 47 core columns produced a gallon of molten steel, you would be left with 47 gallons of steel spread out over a large area - how would this produce pools of molten steel? I am not saying this is the case - I guess I am asking that you take your argument a step further and show how you feel thermite would produce pools of molten steel and how much there would be.
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Snivi Yllom Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Dec-09-05 06:30 PM
Response to Original message
103. dunno if this photo is real or photoshopped
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k-robjoe Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Sat Dec-10-05 10:52 AM
Response to Original message
109. Update
Update from Stephen Jones. With photo of redhot steel :

http://www.911blogger.com/2005/12/steven-jones-research...

( Sorry if its allready posted. )

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Clarkent Donating Member (5 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-12-05 12:34 AM
Response to Original message
117. Photo
Edited on Mon Dec-12-05 12:37 AM by Clarkent
The source of the photo comes from Frank Silecchia's website. Its been around for a while.
I suspect Jones didn't know either after I e-mailed him about it.

http://web.archive.org/web/20020609005905/www.wtcgodsho...

Honestly I don't buy the thermite theory. I don't want to get into a big debate right now as to why.
Possibly later I'll write a more detailed explaination as to all of the problems with Jones research.
Right now I'd just like to see more information get out there so this whole thing can be played out.
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rumpel Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Mon Dec-12-05 03:17 AM
Response to Reply #117
118. The second photo reminds me of the building remnant in Hiroshima.
Welcome to DU

:)
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MrSammo1 Donating Member (788 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Dec-14-05 05:10 AM
Response to Reply #118
123. Bingo!
You're getting hotter!
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Bouvet_Island Donating Member (227 posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Tue Dec-13-05 09:41 PM
Response to Reply #117
122. I'd like to welcome you to the debate as well,
it'd be very interesting to hear a good critique on the Thermite theory.
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paulthompson Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Dec-15-05 10:20 PM
Response to Reply #117
124. Photo
So who to credit for the photo, Frank Silecchia? Was he the person who took it? I'd like to add it to my timeline site, but I want it properly credited.
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