Beyond - Misinformation - 2015

Beyond - Misinformation - 2015

(Parte 1 de 12)

What Science Says About the Destruction of World Trade Center Buildings 1, 2, and 7

Review Committee

Sarah Chaplin, Architect and Urban Development Consultant, Former Head of School of Architecture and Landscape, Kingston University, London

Dr. Mohibullah Durrani, Professor of Engineering and Physics, Montgomery College, Maryland Richard Gage, AIA, Founder and CEO of Architects & Engineers for 9/1 Truth Dr. Robert Korol, Professor Emeritus of Civil Engineering, McMaster University, Ontario

Dr. Graeme MacQueen, Retired Professor of Religious Studies and Peace Studies, McMaster University, Ontario

Robert McCoy, Architect

Dr. Oswald Rendon-Herrero, P.E., Professor Emeritus of Civil and Environmental Engineering, Mississippi State University

Author Ted Walter, Director of Strategy and Development, Architects & Engineers for 9/1 Truth

Technical Editor Chris Sarns

Contributing Writers

Craig McKee Chris Sarns Andrew Steele

What Science Says About the Destruction of World Trade Center Buildings 1, 2, and 7

Architects & Engineers for 9/1 Truth 2342 Shattuck Avenue Suite 189 Berkeley, CA 94704

© 2015 Architects & Engineers for 9/1 Truth, Inc.

1. Formulating a Hypothesis4
High-Rise Building Fires and Failures4
The Features of Controlled Demolition vs. Fire-Induced Failure7
What Is the Most Likely Hypothesis?9
2. The Official Investigations10
The FEMA Building Performance Study10
The NIST Investigation13
NIST’s Probable Collapse Sequences for WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 714
3. The Destruction of WTC 1 and WTC 216
Sudden Onset17
Constant Acceleration through the Path of Greatest Resistance18
Pulverization, Dismemberment, and Explosive Ejection of Materials20
Demolition Squibs21
Eyewitness Accounts of Explosions2
4. The Destruction of WTC 724
Sudden and Symmetrical Free Fall24
Structural Dismemberment into a Compact Debris Pile27
Eyewitness Accounts of Explosions27
Foreknowledge of WTC 7’s Destruction28
5. High-Temperature Thermitic Reactions30
Molten Metal Pouring out of WTC 231
Molten Metal in the Debris32
Sulfidated Steel in WTC 73
Iron Spherules and Other Particles in the WTC Dust34
Nano-thermite in the WTC Dust35
NIST’s Refusal to Test for Explosives or Thermite Residues36
6. NIST’s Evidence for Fire-Induced Failure38
Hypothetical Blast Scenarios and Thermite Use39
Estimates of Fireproofing Dislodgement40
How Hot Did the Steel Become?41
NIST’s Computer Modeling42
Appendix A: Eyewitness Accounts of Explosions4
Appendix B: Accounts Indicating Foreknowledge of WTC 7’s Destruction46


According to the official explanation, the World Trade Center Twin Towers (WTC 1 and WTC 2) collapsed due to damage from airplane impacts and ensuing fires, while World Trade Center Building 7 (WTC 7), a 47-story skyscraper also in the World Trade Center complex, collapsed completely and symmetrically into its own footprint due to office fires ignited by debris from the earlier collapse of WTC 1. Though few people have studied it closely, a majority of the public, including most architects, engineers, and scientists, accept the official explanation.1

Much of the public, however, including a considerable number of architects, engineers, and scientists, do not accept the official explanation.2 3 Among those who reject it, the most common explanation is that WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7 were destroyed in a procedure known as “controlled demolition,” whereby carefully placed explosives or other devices are detonated to bring down a structure in a desired manner. September 1, 2001, aside, every total collapse of a steel-framed high-rise building in history has been caused by controlled demolition.

According to this second explanation, the demolition of WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7 would need to have been prepared before September 1, 2001, by demolition experts who had unrestricted access to the buildings. This explanation also implies that the demolition was planned in coordination with the other attacks of that day. Most importantly, if the goal were to make it appear that the airplanes had caused the destruction of the buildings, it could not be left to chance that airplanes would successfully crash into WTC 1 and WTC 2. This explanation, therefore, contradicts the official account of 9/1.

What Does Science Say?

The purpose of this booklet is to provide a careful examination of these competing explanations — which we will refer to as “hypotheses” from this point forward — and a comprehensive overview of the available evidence, so that readers can begin to evaluate which of the two hypotheses is more consistent with the evidence. Because this booklet only skims the surface of this subject, readers are strongly encouraged to study the official reports and the papers referenced herein before reaching their own conclusions.

The position taken in the following chapters is that very little of the evidence can be explained by the hypothesis of fire-induced failure and that all of it can be explained by the hypothesis of controlled demolition. Nonetheless, this booklet will make the best attempt to describe how the authors of the official reports have explained the evidence according to their hypothesis. In many cases, however, we will find that the authors of the official reports denied or ignored the available evidence.

In the end, the goal is to move our collective understanding of the World Trade Center’s destruction beyond misinformation so that we as a society may arrive at an accurate account of one of the most important events in our recent history.

What caused the destruction of the World Trade Center Twin Towers and Building 7 on September 1, 2001? More than a decade later, this question continues to be discussed by many people around the world.


The World Trade Center site in New York City. The former footprints of WTC 1 and WTC 2 are center. The former footprint of WTC 7 is at the bottom left.


One principle of the scientific method is especially relevant in the early stage of an investigation when data is being gathered and a hypothesis is being formulated. “Unprecedented causes should not, without good reasons, be posited to explain familiar occurrences,” observes David Ray Griffin, a professor emeritus of Philosophy of Religion and Theology who has written extensively about the philosophy of science and about the events of September 1, 2001. “[W]e properly assume, unless there is extraordinary evidence to the contrary, that each instance of a familiar occurrence was produced by the same causal factors that brought about the previous instances.”1

With that principle in mind, we will review the history of high-rise building fires and failures to help us establish what should be considered, or should have been considered, the most likely hypothesis for the destruction of WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7.

High-Rise Building Fires and Failures

The history of steel-framed high-rise buildings spans about 100 years. Setting aside the events of September 1, 2001, every total collapse of a steelframed high-rise building during that period of time has been caused by controlled demolition. In comparison, fires have never caused the total collapse of a steel-framed high-rise building, though high-rise building fires occur frequently.

Formulating a Hypothesis

This chapter provides a starting point from which to examine the competing hypotheses of fire-induced failure and controlled demolition. First, it will review the history of high-rise building fires and failures. Then it will examine the features that distinguish fire-induced failure and controlled demolition.

Before and after photos of World Trade Center Building 7.

Modern steel-framed high-rises generally endure fires without being structurally compromised because they have fire protection to prevent the steel from heating to the point where it loses a significant amount of its strength. This is usually in the form of gypsum board (drywall), concrete, or sprayed-on insulation.

To illustrate the performance of steel-framed highrise buildings throughout history, let us first examine the instances in which fires have caused the total or partial collapse of high-rise buildings.

In 2002, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) conducted an international historical survey of fires in multi-story buildings (defined as four or more stories) of all kinds that

resulted in total or partial collapse.2 From news databases, published literature, and direct inquires with 23 organizations, the survey identified 2 fire-induced collapses between 1970 and 2002.

Originally, the survey included WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7. However, it was revised in 2008 to remove WTC 1 and WTC 2, because, according to NIST, their destruction did not result solely from fire, but from a combination of structural damage, dislodged fireproofing, and fire caused by the airplane impacts. However, in this chapter, because fire was reportedly the proximate cause, we will discuss WTC 1 and WTC 2 as fire-induced failures. In the chapters ahead, we will examine whether the structural damage and reported dislodging of fireproofing are sufficient reasons to differentiate WTC 1 and WTC 2 from other steel-framed high-rise buildings that have experienced fires.

The results of NIST’s survey were as follows:

Partial Collapses

Of the 2 fire-induced collapses, 15 were partial collapses, with five of those occurring in buildings that were comparable to WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7 in terms of size or construction (over 20 stories or steel-framed or both). The five are:

■■One New York Plaza, a 50-story steel-framed building that experienced local connection failures resulting in filler beams on the 33rd and 34th floors dropping onto their supporting girders;

■■Alexis Nihon Plaza, a 15-story steel-framed building in Montreal, Canada, that experienced a partial collapse of its 11th floor;

■■WTC 5, a nine-story steel-framed building in the WTC complex that experienced partial collapses of four floors and two bays on September 1, 2001;

■■The Jackson Street Apartments, a 21-story reinforced concrete building in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, that experienced the partial collapse of a floor/ceiling assembly; and

■■CESP 2, a 21-story reinforced concrete building in Sao Paulo, Brazil, that experienced a substantial partial collapse of its central core.

The remaining 10 partial collapses occurred in buildings with eight or fewer stories and constructed of materials including concrete, brick, wood, or masonry with cast iron. None were steel-framed.

Total Collapses

Of the 2 fire-induced collapses, seven of them (including WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7) were total collapses. WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7 stand out from the

WTC 5 on September 1, 2001.

WTC 5 on September 21, 2001.

T S & ENGINEERS FOR 9/1 TRUTH other four buildings, which ranged from four stories to nine stories and were made of concrete, wood, or unknown materials.

In summary, the survey identified four other documented instances in which fires caused the total collapse of a multi-story building. None were steelframed and the tallest was nine stories. Fifteen buildings suffered partial fire-induced collapse, but only five of them occurred in buildings that were over 20 stories and/or steel-framed. The survey concluded, “A fire-induced collapse in a multi-story building can be classified as a low-frequency, high-consequence event.”

Other notable fire-induced collapses have occurred since 2002. In 2005, the 29-story Windsor Tower in Madrid, Spain, constructed of steel exterior columns and reinforced concrete core columns, burned for almost 24 hours and suffered a partial collapse, in stages over several hours, of floors where the steel support columns and beams had no fire protection. In 2008, the 13-story Delft University Faculty of Architecture Building in the Netherlands, constructed of reinforced concrete, burned for seven hours and experienced a partial collapse of a 13-story section of the building. Yet there remains no documented instance of a steel-framed high-rise building suffering total collapse from fire, and only a small number have experienced partial collapse.

Let us now examine the incidence of high-rise building fires that do not cause total or partial collapse. In 2013, the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) published the most recent edition of its periodic report titled High-Rise Building Fires. According to the report, which defines high-rise buildings as having seven stories or more, there were an estimated 15,400 high-rise building fires in the U.S. annually from 2007 to 2011. Fifty percent of those occurred in buildings typically considered high-rise buildings (that is, with multiple separate floors such as apartments, hotels, facilities that care for the sick, and offices). The incidence in that five-year stretch is similar to the number of fires observed in earlier time periods.

The NFPA report notes that, by most measures, the risks of fire and of associated losses are lower in high-rise buildings than in other buildings of the same property use. The difference, says the report, can be attributed to the much greater use of fire protection systems and features in high-rise buildings as compared to shorter buildings.

In terms of buildings that are more comparable to WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7, the report estimates that 1,610 fires occur each year in buildings with 13 or more stories. Since the report does not categorize fires by size, severity, or duration, it is difficult to tell how many of these fires are comparable to the fires in WTC 1, WTC 2, and WTC 7.

One method of comparison, though, is to identify high-rise building fires that resulted in significant fire damage and property loss. Using those criteria, NIST’s 2002 historical survey (updated in 2008), referenced above, identified seven major high-rise building fires that did not result in total or partial collapse. Those included:

■■One Meridian Plaza in Philadelphia, PA (height: 38 stories; fire duration: 19 hours)

■■Mercantile Credit Insurance Building in

Basingstoke, United Kingdom (height: 12 stories; fire duration: unknown)

■■Broadgate Phase 8 in London, United

Kingdom (height: 14 stories; fire duration: 4.5 hours)

■■First Interstate Bank in Los Angeles, CA (height: 62 stories; fire duration: 3.5 hours)

■■MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas, NV (height:

The Windsor Tower in Madrid, 2005.The Windsor Tower after having burned for almost 24 hours.

7 BRE tests in Cardington, United Kingdom.

26 stories; fire duration: 8 hours)

■■Joelma Building in Sao Paulo, Brazil (height: 25 stories; fire duration: one hour and 40 minutes)

■■Andraus Building in Sao Paolo, Brazil (height: 31 stories; fire duration: unknown)

The NIST survey also noted two major fire test programs conducted at the Building Research Establishment (BRE) Laboratories in Cardington, United Kingdom. The first series of tests, conducted on a representative eight-story composite steel-framed office building, resulted in significant fire damage but did not result in collapse, even with unprotected steel floors. The second series of tests conducted on a seven-story concrete building also did not result in collapse.

Given the high frequency of fires in steel-framed high-rise buildings and the low frequency of fire-induced collapses, the probability when a fire occurs in a steel-framed high-rise building that it will result in a partial collapse is extremely low. The probability that it will result in a total collapse appears to be even lower.

Let us take WTC 7 as an example. According to the official explanation, its collapse was due solely to normal office fires and not from structural damage caused by debris. The probability when WTC 7 caught fire that it would totally collapse as a result of those normal office fires was exceedingly low.

The Features of Controlled Demolition vs. Fire-Induced Failure

Let us now move from examining the occurrence of collapse to the manner of collapse produced by controlled demolition and fire-induced failure, respectively. Table 1 on the following page lists several common features that generally distinguish controlled demolitions and fire-induced failures.

As Table 1 illustrates, the corresponding features of controlled demolition and fire-induced failure are virtually the opposite of each other. Not every controlled demolition exhibits all of the features of controlled demolition listed in Table 1, nor does every fire-induced failure exhibit all of the features of fire-induced failure listed in Table 1. However, there is very little crossover: When a building’s cause of collapse is controlled demolition, the building exhibits virtually none of the features of fire-induced failure. Similarly, when a building suffers a fire-induced failure, it exhibits virtually none of the key features of controlled demolition (with the exception

(Parte 1 de 12)