Traces of explosives in 9/11 dust, scientists say

Traces of explosives in 9/11 dust, scientists say
by Elaine Jarvik
Deseret News

Tiny red and gray chips found in the dust from the collapse of the World Trade Center contain highly explosive materials — proof, according to a former BYU professor, that 9/11 is still a sinister mystery.

online casinoPhysicist Steven E. Jones, who retired from Brigham Young University in 2006 after the school recoiled from the controversy surrounding his 9/11 theories, is one of nine authors on a paper published last week in the online, peer-reviewed Open Chemical Physics Journal. Also listed as authors are BYU physics professor Jeffrey Farrer and a professor of nanochemistry at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark.

For several years, Jones has theorized that pre-positioned explosives, not fires from jet fuel, caused the rapid, symmetrical collapse of the two World Trade Center buildings, plus the collapse of a third building, WTC-7.

The newest research, according to the journal authors, shows that dust from the collapsing towers contained a “nano-thermite” material that is highly explosive. Although the article draws no conclusions about the source and purpose of the explosives, Jones has previously supported a theory that the collapse of the WTC towers was part of a government conspiracy to ignore warnings about the 9/11 terrorists so that the attack would propel America to wage war against Afghanistan and Iraq.

The next step, Jones said in a phone interview on Monday, is for someone to investigate “who made the stuff and why it was there.”

A layer of dust lay over parts of Manhattan immediately following the collapse of the towers, and it was samples of this dust that Jones and fellow researchers requested in a 2006 paper, hoping to determine “the whole truth of the events of that day.” They eventually tested four samples they received from New Yorkers.

One sample was from a man who had swept up a handful of dust on the Brooklyn Bridge, where he was walking when the second tower fell. As the journal authors note, “It was, therefore, definitely not contaminated by the steel-cutting or clean-up operations at Ground Zero, which began later. Furthermore, it is not mixed with dust from WTC-7, which fell hours later.”

Another man collected dust in his apartment, about five blocks from the World Trade Center, on the morning of Sept. 12. There was a layer about an inch thick on a stack of folded laundry near an open window.

Red/gray chips, averaging in size between .2 and 3 mm, were found in all four dust samples. The chips were then analyzed using scanning electron microscopy and other high-tech tools.

Scholars for 9-11 Truth and Justice Issue Press Release

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Victoria Ashley, STJ911 committee member
Phone: 510-769-5109
Site: www.STJ911.org
Email: stj911@gmail.com

Study: Scientists Discover Active Thermitic Material in WTC Dust

Berkeley, CA, April 3, 2009 — A new study by independent scientists and researchers suggests the cause behind the catastrophic destruction of World Trade Center Towers on September 11th can be seen in the dust itself: active thermitic material, a highly engineered explosive.

The study, published today in The Open Chemical Physics Journal, describes a finding of “red/gray bi-layered chips” in samples of dust taken from vicinity of the World Trade Center following its destruction. Using tools such as a scanning electron microscope (SEM) and x-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy (XEDS) to analyze the material, the study authors concluded that, “the red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.”

The study’s finding lends new support to the demolition theory put forth by critics of the official reports.

At a time when the American public is finding it difficult to understand the full story behind the current economic crisis, findings of a demolition raise new questions about how the ‘War on Terror’ — an enormous source of recent American spending — was started.

Officials with the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), charged with establishing the cause of the buildings’ destruction, have stated that they “did not test for the residue of these compounds in the steel,” and that thermite, “or another incendiary compound,” would be too difficult to have placed in the buildings without notice.

NIST has stated that such difficulties make demolition unlikely. They concluded that aircraft impacts and the subsequent fires led to the building failures.

Dr. Steven Jones, physicist and author on the paper, says that NIST has refused to test the dust for thermite, super-thermite, or any other accelerant or explosive.

“We’ve repeatedly asked them to follow standard investigative procedure, to perform these tests and release the results. They haven’t.”

Jones says such tests may be required by fire protection codes.

Kevin Ryan, chemist and co-author on the paper, explained why he thinks NIST is wrong. “What we’ve discovered is not conventional thermite — which is what NIST continues to refer to — but a highly engineered thermitic material, or ‘super thermite’, probably designed for just this type of application.”

Pre-planned demolition, supporters say, is the ‘best-fit’ model for the many unusual and unexplained characteristics of the building failures, such as the speed and symmetry of the collapses, and the extreme pulverization of the materials leading to clouds of micron-sized dust particles, described in one insurance report as behaving similar to a “volcanic eruption”.

“One of the unusual features that piqued my interest,” Jones said, “was the pools of molten metal seen in all three rubble piles, WTC 1, 2 & 7.”

NIST officials have published a response stating that the condition of the steel was “irrelevant to the investigation of the collapse.”

Jones, formerly a Professor of Physics with Brigham Young University and known for his work in muon-catalyzed fusion, published in Nature, Scientific American, and the Journal of Physical Chemistry, began researching the 9/11/01 attacks in 2005.

Jones discovered the curious thermitic material in 2007, when he ran a magnet over a dust sample given to him by a Manhattan resident survivor of the attack, and found that some particles were attracted to the magnet.

“That was very odd to me,” he said.

Those particles turned out to be iron-rich microspheres, partially described in a 2001 USGS study of the dust.

But to fully analyze, describe and report on the thermitic material would take longer.

Jones was joined in that effort by several others including Dr. Niels Harrit, a chemistry professor with the University of Copenhagen for over 30 years and author of numerous research papers in journals such as Nano Letters, the Journal of the American Chemistry Society, and the Journal of Physical Chemistry A.

Harrit says that he is frequently asked why he researches the September 11th attack. and says has two answers.

“First, I am opposed to crime, and second, when my 6 grandchildren ask me, ‘Grandfather, which side were you on?’ I will be able to answer them, ‘I was on your side’.”

Co-author Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, a materials scientist and Director of the TEM (Transmition Electron Microscopy) laboratory at BYU, says he hopes the paper will “change the way the 9/11 truth movement is viewed by the mainstream public and media.”

And chemist and co-author Kevin Ryan, a former Underwriters Laboratories manager, challenged the NIST report in public statements in 2004, and was consequently fired.

“This finding really goes beyond anything that has previously been shown,” says Jones. “We had to use sophisticated tools to analyze the dust because this isn’t just a typical explosive, RDX or CD4 or something — this is a highly engineered material not readily available to just anyone.”

In a 2006 interview with Deseret News, Jones noted that commercial explosives must contain tag elements for traceability, but that no law requires tagging of advanced forms of thermitics.

In 2008, several of these authors published three articles challenging the official reports in US scientific journals, The Open Civil Engineering Journal, The Environmentalist, and The Journal of Engineering Mechanics Dozens of other papers making similar challenges have been published in the sister publication of the Scholars group, The Journal of 9/11 Studies

Scholars for 9/11 Truth and Justice is a non-partisan organization of over 700 independent researchers analyzing the September 11, 2001 attacks with a strong emphasis on the scientific method.

For information: http://www.stj911.com or
Contact: stj911@gmail.com
Phone: 510-769-5109
# # #

Scientists find active ‘super-thermite’ in WTC dust

Editors Note:  Since posting this story as written below, The Raw Story has since revised the story “for balance and clarity” and can be found at the same url as this story was.

Scientists find active ‘super-thermite’ in WTC dust
by Joe Byrne
Saturday April 4, 2009
The Raw Story

A team of nine scientists have released a startling new report on the events of 9/11, using data from dust gathered in the days and weeks after the towers came down. They discovered that scattered throughout the dust samples were red and gray chips of ‘active thermitic material’, or an un-reacted pyrotechnic explosive.

Thermite is used in steel welding, fireworks shows, and hand grenades. It is the combination of a metal powder and a metal oxide which produce a reaction known for extremely high temperatures focused in a very small area for a short period of time. The ‘active thermitic material’ discovered in the World Trade Center dust was a combination of elemental aluminum and iron oxide, and is a form of thermite known as ‘nano-structured super-thermite’.

“These observations reminded us of nano-thermite fabricated at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory and elsewhere; available papers describe this material as an intimate mixture of UFG[Ultra-fine grain] aluminum and iron oxide in nano-thermite composites to form pyrotechnics or explosives. Commercially available thermite behaves as an incendiary when ignited, but when the ingredients are ultra-fine grain and are intimately mixed, this ‘nano-thermite’ reacts very rapidly, even explosively, and is sometimes referred to as ‘super-thermite’,” the report explains.

The full article in The Open Chemical Physics Journal can be found here.

Some of the authors of the paper have lost their jobs at universities and chemistry labs for their outspoken breakdown of what happened at the World Trade Center on 9/11. Kevin Ryan lost his job as a lab director after writing a letter to the National Institute for Standards and Technology(NIST was conducting an investigation into 9/11 at the time) challenging the common theory that burning jet fuel weakened the steel supports holding up the 110-story skyscrapers. Ryan claims that the owner of his laboratory subsidiary “was the company that certified the steel components used in the construction of the WTC buildings,” according to the South Bend Tribune. Dr. Steven E. Jones, a physicist at Brigham Young University, presented a paper in 2005 discussing alternative theories to the commonly accepted ‘jet fuel’ reasoning. In September 2006 he was placed on paid administrative leave and his paper was removed from the BYU database.

Jones has told Visibility911.com, “In short, the paper explodes the official story that ‘no evidence’ exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.”

It remains to be seen if this study will encourage further investigation into the events of 9/11, or if anyone will come forth with a legitimate reason as to why nano-structured super-thermite can be found in dust produced by the collapse of the World Trade Centers.

Original article here.

Visibility 9-11 Welcomes back to the Program Kevin Ryan

This important episode of Visibility 9-11 welcomes back to the program chemist and whistleblower Kevin Ryan.

Kevin is a chemist who is formerly of Underwriter Laboratories.  Kevin became a 9-11 whistleblower when he was fired for writing his now infamous 2004 letter to Frank Gayle at the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST).  Kevin has been very prolific in his research since getting fired by UL and has either authored or co-authored many important papers relating to 9-11 since 2004.

Kevin is a co-editor at the Journal of 9-11 Studies and has been a stalwart in the scientific and scholarly area of the 9-11 Truth Movement.

Our talk today with Kevin features an in-depth discussion on a new paper which has been formally published and peer reviewed by The Open Chemical Physics Journal titled Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe.  In this revolutionary new research paper, discoveries made in the World Trade Center dust, particularly the red/gray bi-layered chips, are examined in great detail and include evidence of the thermite fingerprint at every juncture.

The research paper ends with this sentence, which pulls no punches when it comes to what the authors believe these red/gray chips to be:

Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.

Kevin Ryan says,

My colleagues and I have a new mainstream peer-reviewed paper published today, entitled “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust From the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe”.  Basically it shows that high tech explosive/pyrotechnic materials are scattered throughout the WTC dust.  How can this be?

Dr. Steven E. Jones another co-author of the paper writes:

In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.”  The red/gray chips are the “loaded gun” of  9-11.

Download this important episode of Visibility 9-11 here.

Find links to the research paper, these episodes, and watch for other planned interviews on this topic at our Visibility 9-11 Special Report, The Thermite Fingerprint; The Loaded Gun.

Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe

Message from Dr. Steven E. Jones
911blogger.com

Formally published in a peer-reviewed Chemical Physics journal, today:

“Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” by Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley and Bradley R. Larsen

The paper ends with this sentence: “Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”

In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.

What is high-tech explosive/pyrotechnic material in large quantities doing in the WTC dust? Who made tons of this stuff and why? Why have government investigators refused to look for explosive residues in the WTC aftermath?

These are central questions raised by this scientific study.

The peer-review on this paper was grueling, with pages of comments by referees. The tough questions the reviewers raised led to months of further experiments. These studies added much to the paper, including observation and photographs of iron-aluminum rich spheres produced as the material is ignited in a Differential Scanning Calorimeter (see Figures 20, 25 and 26).

The nine authors undertook an in-depth study of unusual red-gray chips found in the dust generated during the destruction of the World Trade Center on 9/11/2001. The article states: “The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 ?C, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” The images and data plots deserve careful attention.

Some observations about the production of this paper:

1. First author is Professor Niels Harrit of Copenhagen University in Denmark, an Associate Professor of Chemistry. He is an expert in nano-chemistry; current research activities and his photo can be found here:
http://cmm.nbi.ku.dk/
Molecular Structures on Short and Ultra Short Timescales
A Centre under the Danish National Research Foundation

The Centre for Molecular Movies was inaugurated 29th November 2005, at the Niels Bohr Institute, University of Copenhagen. The Centre is made possible through a five year grant from the Danish National Research Foundation (see e.g. www.dg.dk). We aim to obtain real time “pictures” of how atoms are moving while processes are taking place in molecules and solid materials, using ultrashort pulses of laser light and X-rays. The goal is to understand and in turn influence, at the atomic level, the structural transformations associated with such processes.

The Centre combines expertise form Risø National Laboratory, University of Copenhagen, and the Technical University of Denmark in structural investigation of matter by synchrotron X-ray based techniques, femtosecond laser spectroscopy, theoretical insight in femtosecond processes, and the ability to tailor materials, and design sample systems for optimal experimental conditions.”

We understand that the Dean of Prof. Harrit’s college, Niels O Andersen, appears as the first name on the Editorial Advisory Board of the Bentham Science journal where the paper was published.

2. Second author is Dr. Jeffrey Farrer of BYU. http://www.physics.byu.edu/images/people/farrer.jpg

3. Dr. Farrer is featured in an article on page 11 of the BYU Frontiers magazine, Spring 2005: “Dr. Jeffrey Farrer, lab director for TEM” (TEM stands for Transmission Electron Microscopy). The article notes: “The electron microscopes in the TEM lab combine to give BYU capabilities that are virtually unique… rivaling anything built worldwide.” The article is entitled: “Rare and Powerful Microscopes Unlock Nano Secrets,” which is certainly true as regards the discoveries of the present paper.

4. Kudos to BYU for permitting Drs. Farrer and Jones and physics student Daniel Farnsworth to do the research described in the paper and for conducting internal reviews of the paper. Dr. Farrer was formerly first author on this paper. But after internal review of the paper, BYU administrators evidently disallowed him from being first author on ANY paper related to 9/11 research (this appears to be their perogative, but perhaps they will explain). Nevertheless, the paper was approved for publication with Dr. Farrer’s name and affiliation listed and we congratulate BYU for this. We stand by Dr. Farrer and congratulate his careful scientific research represented in this paper.

5. Perhaps now there will finally be a review of the SCIENCE explored by Profs. Harrit and Jones and by Drs. Farrer and Legge and their colleagues, as repeatedly requested by these scientists. We challenge ANY university or established laboratory group to perform such a review. This paper will be a good place to start, along with two other peer-reviewed papers in established journals involving several of the same authors:

Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction

Authors: Steven E. Jones, Frank M. Legge, Kevin R. Ryan, Anthony F. Szamboti, James R. Gourley
The Open Civil Engineering Journal, pp.35-40, Vol 2
http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCIEJ/2008/00000002/00000…

Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials
Authors: Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
The Environmentalist, August, 2008
http://dx.doi.org/10.1007/s10669-008-9182-4

6. James Hoffman has written three essays further explaining the implications and results of the paper. Thank you, Jim, for this work! http://911research.wtc7.net/essays/thermite/index.html

7. Important features of the research have been independently corroborated by Mark Basile in New Hampshire and by physicist Frédéric Henry-Couannier in France., proceeding from earlier scientific reports on these discoveries (e.g., by Prof. Jones speaking at a Physics Dept. Colloquium at Utah Valley University last year.) We understand that details will soon be forthcoming from these independent researchers.

Now read the paper for yourself, and let your voice regarding these discoveries be heard!
http://www.bentham.org/open/tocpj/openaccess2.htm then click on “Active Thermitic Materials Discovered…”

Direct page link: (D/L PDF at source…)
http://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/000000…

Visibility 9-11 Welcomes back to the Program Dr. Steven E. Jones

This important episode of Visibility 9-11 welcomes back to the program Physicist Dr. Steven E. Jones.  Dr. Jones is a retired physics professor and first emerged in late 2005 with his important paper, Why Indeed Did the World Trade Center Buildings Completely Collapse?, and has continued to do groundbreaking research into the “collapses” of all three high rise buildings on September 11th, 2001.

Our talk today with Dr. Jones features an in-depth discussion on a new paper which has been formally published and peer reviewed by The Open Chemical Physics Journal titled Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe.  In this revolutionary new research paper, discoveries made in the World Trade Center dust, particularly the red/gray bi-layered chips, are examined in great detail and include evidence of the thermite fingerprint at every juncture.

The research paper ends with this sentence, which pulls no punches when it comes to what the authors believe these red/gray chips to be:

“Based on these observations, we conclude that the red layer of the red/gray chips we have discovered in the WTC dust is active, unreacted thermitic material, incorporating nanotechnology, and is a highly energetic pyrotechnic or explosive material.”

Kevin Ryan says,

“My colleagues and I have a new mainstream peer-reviewed paper published today, entitled “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust From the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe”.  Basically it shows that high tech explosive/pyrotechnic materials are scattered throughout the WTC dust.  How can this be?”

Dr. Steven E. Jones another co-author of the paper writes:

“In short, the paper explodes the official story that “no evidence” exists for explosive/pyrotechnic materials in the WTC buildings.”  The red/gray chips are the “loaded gun” of  9-11.

 

 

Download this important episode of Visibility 9-11 here.

Find links to the research paper, these episodes, and watch for other planned interviews on this topic at our Visibility 9-11 Special Report, The Thermite Fingerprint; The Loaded Gun.

George Flynn of Words of Freedom Welcomes Michael Wolsey of Visibility 9-11

George Flynn of Words of Freedom Welcomes Michael Wolsey of Visibility 9-11
georgeflynn

Press to play.

 

Truth & Deception: An Interview with Kevin Ryan on 9/11

Truth & Deception: An Interview with Kevin Ryan on 9/11

In this interview Kevin Ryan discusses the science and psychology of 9/11. He also mentions an upcoming paper that provides strong evidence of incendiary residues found in the World Trade Center dust. Ryan, who is one of the co-authors of the paper, says that it is “…much more conclusive than anything we’ve published before, and is supported by considerable physical testing.”

American Buddhist Net News
2/14/09

ABN: Kevin, you have been a central figure in the 9/11 truth movement. What have you learned from that experience?

KR: The struggle for 9/11 truth has gone on now for over seven years, although I’ve been involved only since 2003. In that time I’ve learned a good deal about history and social inertia, and I’ve made some progress in my communications skills. Many people might think that speaking out publicly, against the wishes of authority like I did, risking one’s career and public standing, can only be harmful to a person. But I’ve found that by showing that I was genuinely seeking a positive outcome, the opportunity to make such a sacrifice became a blessing. There were changes, of course, including a new job and moving to a new town, and a huge amount of work with my new “unpaid job”, but it has been worth it. This is in part due to the fact that I’ve learned that there are many people in the world who feel as I do, that the events of 9/11 were paradoxically something of a gift to mankind. We don’t all agree on the details, but in my view, 9/11 is a wake-up call that can be used for the purpose of realizing our own limitations, and thereby making adjustments to how we live and interact with each other, and how we prioritize the education of our children. Once we tap into this ongoing “inside job”, we will have the power to make lasting positive change in our society.

ABN: Can you say more about what you mean by 9/11 being “something of a gift”? Do you mean that it has woken many people up to deeper levels of American political reality or something else?

KR: Yes, your point is correct but it is more than that. It’s hard to see the positive in 9/11, and it became more difficult for me as I learned that the official story was not only false but that it was absurd, and that we had been deceived en masse. At first I subconsciously accepted the idea of “blowback” – that there were people who were so angry with us that they would do these incredibly violent things to make that anger known. It didn’t occur to me that the terrorists just happened to live on the most strategically important lands in the world, and that overcoming our trillion dollar defenses would require much more than a few box cutters. But when I saw what happened as a result of 9/11, in the name of 9/11, the falsity of the official story and the need to investigate became more obvious. The reason 9/11 can be considered a gift is that so many people have been deceived for so long about what happened. This fact allows us to realize how such deception occurs, how the resulting self-deception can deeply affect our lives, and how it can go on for so long. So 9/11 has awoken us to deeper levels of political reality – deep politics as Peter Dale Scott says – but more importantly it can awaken us to awareness of our own deep psychology.

[Read more…]

Nanothermites and WTC dust

Nanothermites and WTC dust
by Kevin Ryan

This past year I’ve done some photomicroscopy of samples of WTC dust. A number of examples of the photos can be found in the latest AE911truth.org video. The related scientific analyses of the particles found in the WTC dust, in particular the red-gray chips first discovered by Professor Steven Jones, are ongoing.

But I’ve also spent some time making nanothermites, and igniting them. Here is a slideshow of 26 photomicrographs, half of which are nanothermite residues and half of which are ferromagnetic particles extracted from WTC dust samples. These photos share many things in common, including the presence of metallic microspheres, vesicular formations and red-orange chips. Sometimes it’s hard to remember which photo belongs to which category. If the nanothermite residues were mixed with concrete dust and glass fragments, it would likely be much more difficult to notice any differences.

You can see the slideshow here.

http://www.flickr.com/photos/32512879@N05/sets/72157611572140729/show/

Interesting stuff, to be sure. And many thanks to Professor Jones, Janette MacKinlay, Shane Geiger, Mike Berger and others for the samples and inspiration. Scientific papers are on the way, of course, but sharing some of the photos now is worthwhile I think. Here’s to a truthful New Year!

New Journal of 9-11 Studies Paper Published in Peer Reviewed Scientific Journal

Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials

by Kevin R. Ryan, James R. Gourley, and Steven E. Jones
© The Author(s) 2008

Received: 17 February 2008 Accepted: 14 July 2008 Published online: 4 August 2008

Abstract Investigators monitoring air quality at the World Trade Center, after the September 11th attacks, found extremely high levels of volatile organic chemicals as well as unusual species that had never been seen before in structure fires. Data collected by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency indicate striking spikes in levels of benzene, styrene, and several other products of combustion. These spikes occurred on specific dates in October and November 2001, and February 2002. Additionally, data collected by researchers at the University of California Davis showed similar spikes in the levels of sulfur and silicon compounds, and certain metals, in aerosols. To better explain these data, as well as the unusual detection of 1,3-diphenylpropane, the presence of energetic nanocomposites in the pile at Ground Zero is hypothesized.

1 Introduction

For months after the destruction at the World Trade Center (WTC) on 11th September, 2001, the fires at Ground Zero (GZ) could not be put out, despite the following facts.

  • Several inches of dust covered the entire area after the destruction of the WTC buildings.
  • Millions of gallons of water were sprayed onto the debris pile.
  • Several rainfall events occurred at GZ, some heavy; and
  • A chemical fire suppressant called Pyrocool was pumped into the piles (Lipton and Revkin 2001).

The characteristics of these un-extinguishable fires have not been adequately explained as the results of a normal structure fire, even one accelerated by jet fuel. Conversely, such fires are better explained given the presence of chemical energetic materials, which provide their own fuel and oxidant and are not deterred by water, dust, or chemical suppressants.

Apart from the extensive but failed efforts to extinguish the fires, there are several other physical indicators of the presence of energetic chemical reactions in the rubble at GZ. These include the following.

  1. Photographs and witness testimony evidencing molten metal and explosions accompanied by white dust clouds (Jones 2006; Meyerowitz 2006; PBS 2002).
  2. Extremely high temperatures in the fires at the WTC (Jones et al. 2008a).
  3. Unusual spikes in volatile organic chemical (VOC) emissions, suggesting abrupt, violent fires on specific dates.
  4. Unusual species in the environmental monitoring data, also corresponding to specific dates.

Explosions followed by white dust clouds, and molten metal at GZ, are of particular interest in this analysis. A white dust cloud is one of the products of the thermite reaction. The white dust in this case is aluminum oxide, released from the extremely exothermic reaction between
aluminum and iron oxide. The other product of the thermite reaction is molten iron. These facts, coupled with evidence for extremely high temperatures at the WTC, suggest that investigators should examine the potential for such pyrotechnic materials at the WTC. The environmental data described below give more compelling evidence to support such an inquiry.

2 EPA data on VOC emissions from GZ

Through a Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) request, access to environmental monitoring data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) WTC response was obtained (EPA 2004). The data set shows that spikes in the levels of airborne VOCs occurred on specific dates at GZ (Austin Tobin Plaza, WTC 1 or WTC 2), with levels of the related contaminants rising sharply and then falling dramatically back to baseline levels, usually within 1 day or less. An example is shown in Fig. 1, for detections of benzene.

Benzene is a major product of the combustion of plastics and other organic materials. In a typical structure fire, when plastics are abundant, benzene levels have been seen at levels as high as 26 ppb (MOEE 1997). Apart from fires, benzene is seen in high-traffic areas of urban settings, with mean levels of *4 ppb (Crebellia et al. 2001).

Serious health consequences are known to occur when breathing benzene at 100 ppb, and it is known to cause diseases such as leukemia (HHS 2007). Note that, for the first few weeks after 9/11, the levels of benzene detected at GZ were relatively low, although perhaps higher than historical levels from structure fires. But the maximum value detected in November 2001 was 180,000 ppb, and the average daily detection for October and November 2001 was 18,000 ppb. The five peaks in benzene detection occurred on 5th October, 11th October, 3rd November, 8th November, and 16th November.

[Read more…]

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