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9/11 Debris: An Investigation of Ground Zero

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World Trade Center before and after
Credit: Space Imaging, Ground Zero shot by IKONOS satellite 9/15/01

Note: This is an edited excerpt from a larger work of the same title. Download the full PDF now 60.5MB


This book began as a mathematical effort to reconcile the total weight of the seven WTC buildings – the entire World Trade Center complex including basements – with the total weight of debris reportedly removed from Ground Zero. The basic premise was that if I could get accurate numbers for both the buildings and their post-9/11 debris, I could simply subtract debris weight from structure weight to learn how much building material was pulverized into the dust and ash clouds that turned day into night. How much was incinerated?

Were those dust clouds not more dense than they would have been in gravity-driven collapses? Were the debris piles consistent with fires and structural failures? Or did the answers to these questions suggest planned demolition and therefore “inside job?”

While researching, I discovered the math had already been done. (Gregory Urich, “Analysis of the Mass and Potential Energy of World Trade Center Tower 1,” Journal of 9/11 Studies, 2007.) The WTC wasn’t quite as massive as the reports boasted, I learned. As far as the before and after comparison went, everything seemed to add up on paper there. But the stark images and disturbing witness testimony of extreme ruin compelled me to find more sources. So I uncovered, collected, and compared as many of these various numbers as possible. To put it simply, the numbers by themselves didn’t begin to sum  things up.

The respected construction trade magazine Engineering News-Record said the WTC “site concrete was largely pulverized into fine dust….” (Nadine M. Post and Debra K. Rubin, “Debris Mountain Starts to Shrink,” enr.com [cached], 10/1/2001.) The dust in some places measured “several inches thick on the ground.” (Joe Dunne, First Deputy Police Commissioner in Dennis Smith’s Report from Ground Zero: The Story of the Rescue Efforts at the World Trade Center, Viking/Penguin, New York, 2002, p. 63.) Watch the WTC Tower 1 cloud form in this collapse video.  Although “the 9-11 skeptics are apparently unable to offer any quantitative evidence that the observed pulverization of concrete in the collapse of the Twin Towers required pre-planted explosives,” the contents of the WTC dust alone have provided compelling evidence. (quoting Dr. Frank R. Greening, “The Pulverization of Concrete in WTC 1 During the Collapse Events of 9-11 ,” Nov. 2006.) See the chapter “Dust.

I should point out that the final official report on the collapse of the towers did not generate enough “quantitative evidence” to produce a working model demonstrating either WTC tower’s total destruction (see NIST FAQ 10.). Moreover, critical arguments strongly refute what little modeling was done for the supposed collapse initiations. See the section below titled “Investigations.” Some said WTC 1 suffered core failure; some said perimeter column failure. Since it didn’t make sense that the core would fail, NIST chose perimeter.

Elements of the dust and other “conspiracy theorists’” evidence refuting the official theories have always struggled against the easy, logical assumption that the hijacked jets – seen repeatedly on television colliding with the towers – made them fall (only in concert with the jet fuel-fed fire and dislodged fireproofing, officials said). The apparent structural failures seemed to initiate at the points of airplane impact, no less. Obvious, right?

“…now you see the images and it all seems so cut-and-dried, it all seems so utterly clear. Plane hits, plane hits, building falls down, building falls down, but it wasn’t that way at all on the day. We were immersed in confusion… almost suffocated by chaos.” – ABC News anchor on 9/11, Peter Jennings, when interviewed later by the Smithsonian Institution

Now more than ten years later, that confusion can be confronted with hindsight (not 20/20). Researching the events of that day has tended to dig up loads of garbage, as if one had dug too deep at the landfill where the WTC debris now rests. No doubt, the information has been sifted more patiently for evidence.

Thesis: More important than guaranteeing complete “collapse” of both aging, iconic buildings – and WTC Building 7 – was the requirement of pulverization and incineration. Virtually unidentifiable rubble (and bodies) enabled an amazingly fast “cleanup” of the site.

The destruction of evidence and investigative failures at the World Trade Center ruins are just as critical a subject as are the quantities and qualities of the physical evidence often referred to as “debris.” By looking at “Ground Zero” from a few different angles (after opening our eyes) it should be easy to see there was some destructive force in addition to gravity – that the World Trade Center was demolished as the world watched. If you disagree, read yet.

I invite you to watch “9/11 Debris: An Investigation of Ground Zero,” parts one and two, to see and hear about Ground Zero. Part one validates the investigation with compiled reports, images and testimony to the extreme destruction.


“When you look at where the towers used to stand, there is surprisingly so little rubble. Where did all the rubble go?” (ABC News anchor Peter Jennings to on-scene reporter George Stephanopoulos 9/12/2001 at 12:44 p.m. Watch TV archive clip) So begins part two. Mainstream media reports attempt to explain the missing debris. Was it the 120 dumptrucks Mayor Giuliani mentioned on NBC at 9:52 a.m. 9/12? Was it the vast 75-foot deep basement that UK Channel 4 described as “hundreds of feet deep?” (“9/11: Ground Zero Underworld” 2007) Or was it the inches-deep dust that blanketed a city of people unconscious to the reality of the nightmare?


See Molten Steel & Extreme Temperatures at WTC to read an exhaustive collection of material describing the debris field.

The paragraphs below are mostly full of impersonal details, behind which a thousand stories of grief and hope seem to be forgotten. Ground Zero for the first weeks was a city within a city, as a Nov. 4, 2001 CBS segment described it. Donations poured into New York from all over the continent, as did volunteers. See “The Heart of Steel” (2006) for this side of the story.

The incredible compassion dedicated to searching the rubble for survivors was quickly converted into manpower for debris removal, that “indefatigably focused activity that began with the simple goal of rescue but evolved into a therapeutic tool for resolution and acceptance.” (Jeannette Catsoulis, in a 2005 review of Lou Angeli’s “Answering the Call: Ground Zero’s Volunteers“). Even after hope of finding people faded, the shock and sadness were alleviated by the will to help, however that was possible.

The businesspeople who razed the World Trade Center seized upon that opportunity and took advantage. What for many seemed like an exemplary act of American solidarity and cooperation was at the same time a part of the down side of patriotism– an unquestioning following of leaders and popular opinion. (Unfortunately, our leaders did not want an investigation into the events of September 11th. See “9/11 Press for Truth,” specifically 15:54 – 25:46.) “United we stand” became the national theme, set to an omnipresent backdrop of the American flag. Nevermind the fact that we were so united in the act of watching television.

Some Available Images

The sixteen plus acres of Ground Zero (17 including WTC 7) were a crime scene where little investigation took place (See for starters 911research.wtc7.net and http://www.nytimes.com/2002/…pse-inquiry-house.html). However, much documentation did happen. This is despite the ban on photography, which wasn’t officially announced by Mayor Rudolph Giuliani until Tuesday September 25th. (See http://www.boston.com/news…photo_ban.htm or view a photo of one of the posted signs on the site.)

Importantly, people managed to make photographs and videotapes during the first hours and days. Images garnered by government employees include those of FEMA photographers Andrea Booher, whose earliest photographs are dated 9/13 [NOTE: In a personal communication by email, Andrea told me she arrived on 9/12 and began shooting on 9/13.] and Michael Rieger, whose photos are dated 9/18 and afterward; FEMA videographers Kurt Sonnenfeld (see also YouTube to hear his allegations of government malfeasance on 9/11) and Jim Chestnutt, whose tapes have been either unavailable or anonymous (see some FEMA images acquired by by FOIA in 2010 [mirror]); some aerial video by the U.S. Coast Guard on 9/16; one spectacular aerial image from the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration or NOAA (9,372 × 9,372 pixels), only on 9/23 (See this image cropped with a map overlay); also some shots credited to the New York City Office of Emergency Management (OEM) starting 9/15.

The 9/11 TV archive is an indispensable resource. An extended length version of some television network video (example) has recently been acquired by the International Center for 9/11 Studies (In late 2010, thanks to James Gourley and Justin Keogh) though a Freedom of Information Act request of NIST, who amassed hundreds of hours of video for their investigation. However, you’ll notice amateur and personal cameras provided some of the closest, early looks (listed below). ABC News anchor on 9/11, Peter Jennings states this simple fact, pointing out the nature of the technological world we live in today, not so much the reality of blockades. For that, hear ABC reporter George Stephanopoulos mention the armed guards, part of the military presence there for people’s safety, mostly.

Ground Zero on 9/11
Photos by Steve McCurry (click image to see another – from the International Center for 9/11 Studies at 911datasets.org, who released it as part of number 16 in their series)

Videographers include Lou Angeli (see also YouTube), William Cirone (playlist here), Tim Cothren, Kaspar Galli, Etienne Sauret, Matt Siegel, Steve Spak, Kevin Sutavee…. Surely there are more. Photographers of “the pile” include the FDNY (see also Int’l Center for 9/11 Studies NIST FOIA, 911datasets.org release 33, strictly copyright protected), NYPD Aviation (9/11: ex. 2, ex. 3, ex. 4, ex. 5, ex. 6, and another which clarified a misleading photo used by NIST from the same roll of film; NYPD Aviation 9/13: ex. 1, ex. 2, ex. 3, & ex. 4), George Miller of the NYC Transit Authority, Mike Davis, David Hammond, Eric Feferberg (among others named in the International Center for 9/11 Studies 2010 NIST FOIA, specifically 911datasets.org release 29 [NYPD source is release 4 or 8]), and more famous photos from Gary Marlon Suson (see also YouTube), James Nachtwey, Aris Economopoulos, Doug Kanter, and allegedly Frank Silecchia. New York City cop and photographer John Botte was granted access by commissioner (now convicted felon) Bernard Kerik. Botte’s monochrome photos (example) were published in Aftermath: Unseen 9/11 Photos by a New York City Cop (2006).

There are many photos of Ground Zero, but few that were put to use. Aerial photography (see also here) wasn’t able to see through the persistent smoke until September 15, with LIDAR (Light Detection and Ranging – see video clip from “World Trade Center: Rise and Fall of an American Icon” [History, 2002] or read some at http://www.loc.gov/loc/lcib/0209/maps.html). That first LIDAR image (source, credit EarthData International) wasn’t seen by authorities until Sept. 17. This delay for access to the images at the Emergency Mapping and Data Center (EMDC) thereafter was next-day/morning (“Engineering and Organizational Issues Related to The World Trade Center Terrorist Attack Volume 3, Emergency Response in the Wake of the World Trade Center Attack: The Remote Sensing Perspective,” by Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, ImageCat, Inc., for The Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research (MCEER), June, 2002, p. 20). With LIDAR a laser fired from above was able to map topography accurate to 6 inches in height (History, 2002). Depending on equipment, altitude, and speed of the aircraft, the resolution – or distance between points measured by the laser – varied between 6 and 15 feet for EarthData, and a bit more for NOAA (Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., p. 18). Flyovers were done regularly (daily in September, with only a few exceptions — see the imaging timeline [together with more comprehensive details in Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid.]). The main purpose for this and other high tech imaging was to create maps to help search & rescue experts, firefighters, police, ironworkers and others climbing in the pile. With the help of Dr. Sean Ahearn, director of the Center for the Analysis and Research of Spatial Information (CARSI), it was also possible to chart areas of possible collapse (Maddalena Romano, “Charting Ground Zero exhibit opens in Soho,” GeoNews, Volume 15, number 3, February 2002). Finally, the images provided more general information, like changes in the volume of debris. (More on that shortly.)

The Sunday Sept. 23 New York Times ran an article titled “From 5,000 Feet Up, Mapping Terrain for Ground Zero Workers,” which featured a large LIDAR image taken Sept. 19. Compare to another taken Sept. 23 (source, credit NOAA/U.S. Army JPSD) and another, high resolution image dated 9/17 (credit EarthData, source: 911datasets.org Nov. 17, 2010 NYC OEM MAPS FOIL). Much more on mapping Ground Zero can be found at The George Washington University website. Notice the importance of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who in the quote below attest to the importance of LIDAR.

WTC aerial view, LIDAR September 17, 2001

Image credit EarthData, LIDAR September 17, 2001 from the OEM/EMDC FOIA at 911datasets.org

GIS maps are created from aerial photos taken daily at the World Trade Center site. A light detection and ranging system takes photos that scan the area to pinpoint exact elevations.

– Justine Barati, “Corps Assists FEMA and New York City with Mapping Capabilities,” Yankee Engineer World Trade Center Edition, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, New England District. Dec., 2001. p. 9.

Of course more conventional photography was used. Compare aerial images for these days: 9/13, 9/15, 9/17, 9/19, 9/22, 9/26, 9/30, and 10/3 (source: 911datasets.org Nov. 17, 2010 NYC OEM MAPS FOIL, credit EarthData). It’s a shame black and white was used by EarthData (See Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., Section 3.1.3. “Problems”).

Additionally, aerial thermal imagery helped keep rescue workers safe from hot or even molten metal and underground fire (see GeoNews,” Vol. 15, Number 1, October 2001). Images and data from the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) recorded Sept. 16 and later can be found at the USGS website (see also this USGS page). Underground fires burned for more than 3 months, despite the USGS claims that hotspots were nearly eliminated by Sept. 23. (image source) See, for example, “Metal of Honor: The Ironworkers of 9/11” by Rachel Maguire, Spike TV, 2006. Additional examples and much more description of the rubble can be found below. AVIRIS provided the most detailed thermal data (including temperature), but other instruments were also used. For instance, see an image from the “tripod mounted Raytheon Nightsight Palm IR 250 thermal camera, carried aboard a Navajo Chieftain aircraft.” (Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., p. 21.) These images could be combined with 3-D LIDAR (Ibid., p. 32.), but not in the detail provided by AVIRIS. Sadly, “[a]lthough AVIRIS temperature readings were released to the FDNY, this key information was not received by any of the mapping centers.” (Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., p. 39. Also see image below.) [Note there was a mapping center for Urban Search and Rescue at the Jacob K. Javits Convention Center in midtown, which focused on Ground Zero alone. The EMDC at Pier 92 {after being moved from the NY Police Academy Sept. 14, after 2 days} worked on the entire area. Third, there was FEMA working at Pier 90. {Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., p. 6.}]

AVIRIS Sept. 16 thermal image
source – Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid.

AVIRIS also had the ability to measure and help track airborne pollutants, primarily the carcinogen asbestos. See the USGS PDF document “USGS Environmental Studies of the World Trade Center Area, New York City, after September 11, 2001.” Unfortunately, there were “considerable time delays” in getting resulting info. “These compositional results were not released until the 27th September, by which time the risk posed to response crews by airborne contaminants had abated.” (Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, Ibid., p. 26.) This important issue is discussed below in the section “Dust.”

Let’s move on to the usefulness of high tech imaging as it relates to the original purposes of this paper. A significant amount of attention was given to measuring the debris mass and volume. The number of tons of debris removed was often mentioned in reports about Ground Zero. You’ll be reading some of these reports soon.

The volume of debris was calculated through GIS analysis. This helped the city determine how much debris was removed. Images were compared daily to determine changes in the site.

– Vince Elias, et. al., “New York District in the Red Zone,” The New York District Times, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, NY District. Vol. 26, No. 5, Fall, 2001. p. 8.

G.I.S. stands for Geographic Information Systems (see for example “Mapping the Hazards to Keep Rescuers Safe,” New York Times, Oct. 4, 2001). The “systems” constituted software, hardware, and people. Quickly visit New York City’s makeshift OEM headquarters (that replaced WTC 7, destroyed on 9/11) in a Sept. 19 NBC News report. Notice the GIS on the wall behind Director Richard Sheirer (at 0:27).

Authorities at FEMA (and the New York City Office of Emergency Management, who was already working at Pier 92 on the Hudson River in preparation for a bioterrorism exercise planned for 9/12/2001) wanted to know how long the recovery operation would take, and about how much it would cost. Since the NYC OEM headquarters at WTC Building 7 had “collapsed” 9/11 afternoon, Pier 92 conveniently became headquarters. A FEMA Disaster Field Office was established at the adjacent Pier 90 (source – note Pier 91 is on the East River). Debris management experts from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers arrived (Allen Morse and others) and coordinated with both FEMA and city officials (source – USACE). Resulting reports that detailed the calculated debris mass were published and quoted often during the “cleanup.” (Those physically and emotionally involved preferred the term “recovery.”)

Download the full PDF now (60.5MB)


Introduction 5

Available Images 8

Cheap and Fast 15





– Second Plane Impact Error 30



MAP: “Moving Debris by Barge,” New York Times 43


– WTC Debris Weight; Truckloads; Barges 47; 52; 57


Bodies 68



Survivors 86


– 9 Seconds; Floor 22 96; 120

Black Boxes Somewhere 130

Airplane Debris 133

– FEMA’s Fuselage Fib; The Engines 147; 153

Specific Items Recovered 164



Dust 188





Appendix 1: Video timed text captions with sources 211

Appendix 2: Images mentioned 218

Appendix 3: Excerpt from Kevin R. Ryan, Another Nineteen 233

Appendix 4: Changes to previous editions 240

Written by Matt

January 3, 2015 at 1:02 pm

NIST, ARA Error Speaks Volumes

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[UPDATE 2019: Achimspok’s videos are private, but mirrored elsewhere. Links fixed.] When NIST needed help with the analysis and modeling of the controversial WTC 7 “collapse,” Applied Research Associates, Inc. (ARA) was awarded the contract. See http://wtc.nist.gov/solicitations/wtc_awardQ0186.htm and http://wtc.nist.gov/solicitations/wtc_award0539.htm for details on the relationship. NIST and ARA worked together to explain the complex mechanisms for that which had never happened before in the history of steel-framed skyscrapers — total structural collapse due to fire.

The final WTC 7 report (or reports) was released in late 2008… and was summarized in an August 21 press briefing recorded on C-SPAN. (See a rebuttal video now: WTC7 in 7 Minutes: 9/11 Explosions Not Fire, which contains snippets of the NIST briefing from CNN.)

Five years earlier, ARA had been awarded the responsibility of analyzing the aircraft impacts on the two WTC towers. The exact amount of money ARA earned is unknown. Whatever the number, it was too much.

The analyses of the aircraft impacts performed for this investigation are believed to be the highest-fidelity simulations ever performed for this impact behavior using state-of-the art analysis methodologies. Wherever possible, the models were validated against observables or supporting test data developed by the WTC Investigation.


At least one drastic error in those analyses deserves attention. This obvious mistake, explained below, begs the question: If such an oversight could be published, just how much of the WTC 7 report was wrong? If such critical data could be overlooked in order to make the model fit the end result, what real analysis was there?

2nd plane impacts - wingtips nearly simultaneously

It should have been easy to determine the angle at which “United Flight 175” impacted WTC 2, specifically the lateral angle. That is, at least to within 3 or 4 degrees. First look at the video clip above (Michael Hezarkhani/CNN). The wingtips entered nearly at the same time. Therefore – as we shall see in much more video – the angle was nearly perpendicular, between zero and four degrees. Somehow, NIST and their associates missed by ten full degrees.

The trajectory of the aircraft was crucial in determining which core columns were impacted by what. Ten degrees would have made a substantial difference in the damage estimate.

NIST_ARA airplane impact angle
source – ARA (image is also in NIST NCSTAR 1-2B Chap 1 thru 8.pdf, p. 84 of 290, but without the arrow pointing the wrong way for North)

See also this image from NCSTAR 1 p. 40 — a more detailed WTC 2 damage analysis.

The South Tower of the World Trade Center was struck by an airplane on LIVE TV. Today we have more than 50 videos of this event. See http://www.911conspiracy.tv/2nd_hit.html for a detailed list. At publication of the NIST document in 2005, there were at least 30 from which to choose. Below is a plane impact video compilation with many camera locations pinpointed, thanks to dedicated 9/11 researcher Achimspok [original video now private, but mirrored elsewhere].

“UA175 the last 12 seconds, part 2”

By using these precise camera locations and 3D mapping software, Achimspok is able to elaborate on a near-perpendicular lateral impact orientation. This (and another video with more angles)  describe the final seconds of the flight path in detail, unlike the NIST/ARA study.

NIST only shows us the [supposed] final orientation of the airplane and its “assumed” trajectory. Speed was also a factor, but not for the purposes of this essay. I don’t intend to produce a more accurate aircraft impact damage analysis. I don’t have tens (or hundreds) of thousands of dollars to invest in computer simulations and engineering teams. I do plan on showing that the NIST/ARA study was wrong. It’s easy!

Find the official NIST documents on the subject at their .gov website: NIST NCSTAR 1-2: Baseline Structural Performance and Aircraft Impact Damage Analysis of the World Trade Center Towers. Find the other WTC documents at http://wtc.nist.gov/NCSTAR1/.

In NCSTAR 1-2B (Ch. 7, p. 172) we read the excuse for the mistake by Steven W. Kirkpatrick and Robert T. Bocchieri (with Robert A. MacNeill, Samuel Holmes, Brian D. Peterson, Robert W. Cilke, and Claudia Navarro) of the U.S. military contractor helping NIST– Applied Research Associates (ARA).

Although the lateral approach angle of UAL 175 had a nominal value of 15 degrees, additional observable information was used to define a most probable flight condition. Figure 7-13 shows the top view of WTC 2 with the engines and landing gear in their pre-impact location. Also shown is the projected trajectory of the starboard engine of UAL 175 with an initial lateral approach trajectory of 13 degrees instead of 15 degrees, assuming the engine was not significantly deflected as it passed through the building. With this lateral trajectory, the starboard engine would exit the tower at the northeast corner, consistent with the observables from video and photographic evidence.

(emphasis added)

NIST WTC 2 impact analysis

It is possible that the tower structure and/or contents deflected the engine from its initial trajectory. The global simulations described in Chapter 9 used a standard configuration for building contents similar to WTC 1. This configuration did not cause substantial deviation in the trajectory of the starboard engine. This lateral trajectory was, therefore, the most likely and was adopted for the global analyses.

They ASSUMED that “the engine was not significantly deflected as it passed through the building.” They disregarded important data, i.e. the correct entry angle, for this reason. This irresponsible act of bad science was done out of laziness. These people were paid by the government (NIST = Dept. of Commerce) and, hence, the taxpaying public.

Additional research into the contents of floor 81 was required. All that really meant was collaborating with the rest of the NIST team. The first clue is provided by the NIST Building and Fire Research Laboratory (Kevin B. McGrattan, Charles Bouldin, and Glenn P. Forney). See NCSTAR 1-5F to find a custom drawn floor plan (see image from Appendix A), which proved to be helpful. “The basic layout from the 78th floor was used for the higher floors with adjustments made to the elevators, vents and major partitions, based on recollections of floor occupants.” (p. 117, or 151 of PDF) From the acknowledgments we learn that “Wayne Schletter, a survivor of WTC 2, provided information about the layout of floors 79 through 82.” (p. xxix) According to nymag.com (and NIST below), he worked on floor 80.

Note that the abrupt change in temperature seen in the northeast corner in the temperature plots of Fig. 6-33 are due to a wall assumed in the floor plan. The coincidence of the wall and the observed window breakage for the first 30 min was merely fortuitous – the wall was put there based only on a rough sketch of the 81st floor by an occupant of the 80th.

– p. 94, or 128 of PDF

WTC2 floor 81 fire simulation

In addition to extra walls, the important revised plan for floor 81 contained a stairwell in the path of the starboard engine (NIST NCSTAR 1-5F). This was not in the original plans because it was built for the tenant Fuji Bank. Although specific records for this particular feature of custom construction are not available, some renovations are listed in the NIST report.

WTC2 tenant alterations
– NIST NCSTAR 1-1H, p. 57 (“floors affected” is obviously wrong, mixed up with WTC1 chart, not pictured)

The only details offered about renovations include the following:

WTC2 renovation floor 81

UPS and Computers

The letters stand for “uninterruptible power supply” – batteries – not United Parcel Service… which NIST actually confused – and confuses! See this letter from NIST to researcher Enrico Manieri:

NIST UPS confusion

OR was this “UPS” confusion the result of deception to downplay the importance of the massive collection of batteries that required the floor trusses to be strengthened. See the extended quote below that shows the batteries were without a doubt in a corner of the building– and when 2 specific corners are mentioned they are the engine-exit northeast (see fig. 13.2 above, although beside where it reads floor 80 and 1990, instead of 81 and 1991, as stated in 1-1 C, p.50 and southwest corners (the SW was where survivor/plane witness Stanley Praimnath was located).

This tells us that the computer room was on the east wall – perhaps on the south. The UPS racks extended to the northeast corner, where the engine (found at the corner of Church and Murray St) exited through the hole hidden by aluminum coating. (Read from NIST NCSTAR 1-3 p. 45 (screenshot) to learn there was no column at floor 81’s corner (see accompanying damage photo).

Next we find the article 9-11 Planes Flew Directly into Secure Computer Rooms in Both Towers. An important witness was an “IT specialist” according to an mp3 audio recording of a Chris Bollyn interview with Stanley Praimnath (at 35:15). Unfortunately, this source remains anonymous. From that article:

Then, out of the blue, a former bank employee came forward, a person who had visited the 81st floor on a weekly basis. His information explains more than he probably thought and provides us with a major clue about what really happened on 9-11. Fuji Bank had torn up the 81st floor, he said, and stripped it down to reinforce the trusses so that the floor could hold more weight. Then they had built a raised floor and filled the entire floor with server-size Uninterrupted Power Supply (UPS) batteries. These units were bolted to the raised floor which stood about 3 feet above the reinforced 81st floor. Beneath the raised floor ran the cables and power supply that connected the army of batteries. IT techies had to get down on all fours and crawl around beneath the raised floor to connect cables.

“The whole floor was batteries,” he said, “huge battery-looking things.” They were “all black” and “solid, very heavy” things that had been brought in during the night. They had been put in place during the summer prior to 9-11, he said.

The last couple sentences there are suspicious– specifically the part about being “brought in during the night” and “put in place during the summer prior….” The fact remains that racks of lead acid batteries were on 81. That, in addition to the staircase, certainly was enough to change the trajectory of the airplane engine in question.

What other clues do we have about the batteries’ location? Stanley Praimnath tells us the computer room was about 20 x 20 feet and the UPS battery room about 40 x 40 feet. He worked in the Fuji Bank loan department, in the southwest corner of the 81st floor. Did he really know? Wouldn’t such rooms be off limits, locked?

UPS battery room door
UPS batteries

NOTE: These pictures are not from WTC 2. They show a UPS battery room, a fire/safety hazard. All of these batteries were needed in the case of an emergency, to prevent data loss in the “computer room,” which would also be off limits, no doubt.

Where were these limits (walls) in the floor plan, though?

Below is the crucial floor plan image from NCSTAR 1-5F Appendix, with a graphic overlay of the scaled Boeing 767 entering at a more accurate angle. Thanks to Femr2, who has worked hard on this problem.

WTC 2 floor 81 with correct impact angle by Femr2

See also this image by Achimspok, demonstrating a nearly perpendicular impact:

WTC Floor 81 impact


Here we have established beyond a doubt that NIST and/or ARA has published false data, knowingly or not. This was done by twisting input data – the cause – in order to match the observed effect.

What does this say about the controversial WTC 7 collapse study? What questions does this raise? Could the cause for the “collapse” have been engineered by ignoring seemingly obvious data, like reports of explosions and a NYC Office of Emergency Management (OEM) report of an elevator car being blown from its shaft into the hall?

Written by Matt

July 11, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Molten Steel & Extreme Temperatures at WTC

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Ground Zero, Manhattan – New York after 9/11


See the following video I made. Please watch in 480p, full screen. (Press play, then adjust resolution. Full screen icon is at right.)

To comment, rate, or to find part two, visit YouTube.com. The video serves as an introduction to the idea of extreme ruin in general, not so much the astronomical temperatures that were a result of the destructive force. A popular descriptive word for Ground Zero, you’ll notice, was:


Let’s hear experienced ironworkers, architects, engineers, firefighters, and professionals who saw the destruction firsthand, as they talk about the mangled steel, extreme temperatures, and unbelievable pulverization of the debris.

Many of the beams were twisted and distorted as though made of rubber or wax. Some beams were over 6 [inches] thick and bent like pretzels. Structural engineers, who are experts in steel structures that have suffered earthquakes and explosions claimed to have seen nothing like this before and could not imagine the kind of pressure and heat required to do this kind of damage.

– Wendy Neu of Hugo Neu Schnitzer East (Hugo Neu Corporation) to the Empire State Chapter of ISRI (Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries) on November 28, 2001, at http://www.hugoneu.com/includes/pdfs/Speech-11-28-2001.pdf

I found it hard to believe that it bent because the size of it and how there’s no cracks in the iron. It’s bent without almost a single crack in it. It takes thousands [?] degrees to bend steel like this.

– Ironworker talking about the “horseshoe” piece saved for possible memorial use, in “Relics from the Rubble,” A&E TV, 2002. Watch clip: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=1m48s — Commenting on the piece of steel, Mark Wagner of Voorsanger Architects and Associates said, “Typically you’d have buckling and tearing on the tension side, but there’s no buckling at all.” (Update: In a recent interview with the 9/11 Memorial Museum, Wagner changed his story – or lied – saying heat was not a contributing factor! Touchy subject, I guess.)

horseshoe steel beam

Architects and engineers — people who work with steel — welders have just never seen the level of destruction and the level of deformation of this material in our lives.

Bart Voorsanger, architect and part of the committee to designate objects to be salvaged) in “Relics from the Rubble,” A&E TV, 2002. — watch at http://www.911conspiracy.tv/mainstream_documentaries.html

This documentary in particular draws attention to the incredible state into which building materials were contorted. The film features a unique look at one of the “meteorites” — a “fused element of steel, molten steel and concrete and all these things fused by the heat into one single element.” (Voorsanger, Ibid. Watch at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=1m20s — or download the clip (mpeg2): here) — update: see a NIST photo from Hangar 17, titled “Fused steel and concrete.” Note that “the melting point of concrete varies between 1800-2500°C” (See http://www.weldcare.co.uk/app10.htm ).

WTC meteorites
WTC “meteorites” — molten steel and concrete, etc.

It was like the surface of another planet. All there was, was powdered debris and metal. It was a – a very strange scene.

– Chief Daniel Nigro (FDNY Chief of Department 2001-2) in “Conspiracy Files – 9/11: The Third Tower,” BBC TV 2008 — http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=9072062020229593250 at vrt 22:21.

NYPD Deputy Inspector and lead investigator on-site at Fresh Kills Landfill (working with FBI), James Luongo, when asked if there were one particular artifact of interest, replied:

I think the lack of artifacts stands out to me quite a bit. I think the fact that I haven’t seen a door, I haven’t seen a phone, I haven’t seen a computer. I haven’t seen a doorknob. I think that stands out.

– “Relics from the Rubble” — See clip at YouTube

by metamars on Thu Jan 08, 2009 5:21 pm
I went to the NYC Police Museum today to verify that the article and accompanying text were genuine. They are, indeed. Furthermore, there were a few shards of glass, with the following text, which I copied down:
‘Glass was a rare find at Ground Zero, where these shards were recovered. The collapse and fires pulverized and melted most of the glass from the Twin Towers 43,600 windows.’


For investigation into the glass – and to see the photo of the NYC Police Museum display – see “Glass A Rare Find at Ground Zero.”

You have two 110-story office buildings. You don’t find a desk. You don’t find a chair. You don’t find a telephone, a computer. The biggest piece of a telephone I found was half of the keypad, and it was about this big. The building collapsed to dust. How are we supposed to find anybody in this that there’s nothing left of the building?”

– FDNY Engine 7’s Joe Casaliggi in the Naudet documentary “9/11” at vrt 1:25:20 in TV version at http://www.911conspiracy.tv/mainstream_documentaries.html

Next a quote from “World Trade Center: Rise and Fall of an American Icon,” THC, 2002 — Col. John O’Dowd of the US Army Corps of Engineers. See vrt 1:06:30 at http://www.911conspiracy.tv/mainstream_documentaries.html

[Narrator] Aside from huge pieces of twisted steel from the towers, there was little that was recognizable in the debris. Shrapnel-like fragments. Gray dust. No one had ever seen anything like it, even at the site of the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City, also destroyed by an act of terrorism.

[O’Dowd] I said, you know, in Oklahoma City, you could see pieces of desks and chairs. There was something that told you that this was an office building. At the World Trade Center site it seems like everything was pulverized.

Here’s another quote from somebody who worked on the pile:

I’ve seen collapses, and [did?] demolition buildings but nothing like– this was unbelievab– like I said there wasn’t a door, there wasn’t anything to be found. It was all disintegrated, all rubble. Concrete was small little pieces, not even slabs. No desks, no furniture, no computers, no phones, no anything. And so I imagine the people were the same as the building– nothing left.

– Tom Spinard, FDNY Engine 7 in “9/11: The Filmmakers’ Commemorative Edition” (see clip)

Engineer Sees Evidence of Extreme Temperatures in WTC Steel

Dr. Abolhassan Astaneh-Asl is a professor of civil and environmental engineering at the University of California at Berkeley, who specializes in studying structural damage done by earthquakes and terrorist bombings. He flew to New York on September 19, 2001 to conduct a two-week reconnaissance of the collapsed towers, hoping to gain an understanding of how they’d come down. He was able to examine numerous pieces of steel taken from Ground Zero. [Kenneth Chang, “Scarred Steel Holds Clues, and Remedies.” New York Times, October 2, 2001; Robert Sanders, “Report from Ground Zero.” Berkeleyan, October 3, 2001; Jeffrey R. Young, “Scholars Work to Rebuild the World Trade Center Virtually.” Chronicle of Higher Education, December 7, 2001.]

He said the towers were exceptionally well designed and built, describing the WTC as “the best-designed building I have ever seen.” [Keay Davidson, “Berkeley Professor Seeks the Safer Skyscraper.” San Francisco Chronicle, October 22, 2001.] Yet the structural steel had suffered unusual warping and other major damage:

• Astaneh-Asl said that steel flanges “had been reduced from an inch thick to paper thin.” [Robert Sanders, “Report from Ground Zero.”]

• At a recycling center in New Jersey, he saw 10-ton steel beams from the towers that “looked like giant sticks of twisted licorice.” [Jeffrey R. Young, “Scholars Work to Rebuild the World Trade Center Virtually.”] He showed the San Francisco Chronicle a “banana-shaped, rust-colored piece of steel” that had somehow “twisted like toffee during the terrorist attack.” [Keay Davidson, “Berkeley Professor Seeks the Safer Skyscraper.”]

• He noted the way steel from the WTC had bent at several connection points that had joined the floors to the vertical columns. He described the connections as being smoothly warped, saying, “If you remember the Salvador Dali paintings with the clocks that are kind of melted–it’s kind of like that.” He added, “That could only happen if you get steel yellow hot or white hot–perhaps around 2,000 degrees.” [Jeffrey R. Young, “Scholars Work to Rebuild the World Trade Center Virtually.”]

• In an interview in 2007, Astaneh-Asl recalled, “I saw melting of girders in [the] World Trade Center.” [“Collapse of Overpass in California Becomes Lesson in Construction.” NewsHour, PBS, May 10, 2007.]

• He found a foot-long twisted shard of steel that was “like a piece of bread, but it was high-strength steel.” He commented, “I haven’t seen anything like this [before].” [Pamitha Reynolds, “Berkeley Prof Analyzes Structural Damage of the WTC.” Berkeley Daily Planet, October 20, 2001.]

• He came across “severely scorched [steel] members from 40 or so floors below the points of impact [by the planes].” [David Kohn, “Culling Through Mangled Steel.” CBS News, March 12, 2002.]

• The fireproofing that had been used to protect the WTC steel also showed evidence of extreme conditions. In some places it had “melted into a glassy residue.” [Kenneth Chang, “Scarred Steel Holds Clues, and Remedies.”]

• Astaneh-Asl saw a charred I-beam from WTC Building 7–a 47-story skyscraper that collapsed late in the afternoon of 9/11, even though no plane hit it. “The beam, so named because its cross-section looks like a capital I, had clearly endured searing temperatures. Parts of the flat top of the I, once five-eighths of an inch thick, had vaporized.” [Ibid.]

– Thanks to Shoestring911 for his blog article, largely quoted above (with numbered endnotes in brackets changed into immediate notes). See http://shoestring911.blogspot.com/2008/02/engineer-sees-evidence-of-extreme.html

FEMA News Photo
– FEMA News Photo, source: http://www.photolibrary.fema.gov/photolibrary/photo_details.do?id=4104

“Metal of Honor: The Ironworkers of 9/11” was a 2006 Spike TV program (by Rachel Maguire, aired Sept. 5) that featured numerous fascinating comments on the extreme heat of underground fires, which were finally extinguished mid-December, according to Spike. One comment from ironworker Larry Keating is repeated in a review by Linda Stasi: “The film shows how they crawled down through and up 100 feet of hot steel, even though sometimes it could explode when the buried ends were exposed to the air.” (See http://www.najaproductions.com/images/pdf/NYP.pdf ) Specifically, Keating says: “The grapplers were pulling stuff out, big sections of iron that were literally on fire on the other end. They would hit the air and burst into flames– which was pretty spooky to see.” (Watch at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=2m20s ) Other clips are found here: http://www.total411.info/2006/10/video-metal-of-honor-ironworkers-on.html

“America Rebuilds” comments on the fires here at 3:25. One of the workers says the fires were at one point “2,800 degrees.” While this could be an overstatement, it is important information that shouldn’t be discounted. Because “iron, out of the ground, melts at around 1510 degrees C (2750°F). Steel often melts at around 1370 degrees C (2500°F).” (source) However,

In no instance did NIST report that steel in the WTC towers melted due to the fires. The melting point of steel is about 1,500 degrees Celsius (2,800 degrees Fahrenheit). Normal building fires and hydrocarbon (e.g., jet fuel) fires generate temperatures up to about 1,100 degrees Celsius (2,000 degrees Fahrenheit). NIST reported maximum upper layer air temperatures of about 1,000 degrees Celsius (1,800 degrees Fahrenheit) in the WTC towers (for example, see NCSTAR 1, Figure 6-36).


While these fires were technically not “in the WTC towers,” but instead in the rubble pile, these extreme temperatures have not been explained. One second hand source confirms, “Thermal measurements taken by helicopter each day showed underground temperatures ranging from 400ºF to more than 2,800ºF.” (Jeffrey W. Vincoli, Norman H. Black and Stewart C. Burkhammer, “SH&E at Ground Zero“) This “small group of SH&E professionals from Bechtel Group Inc.” had no reason to exaggerate… although available data doesn’t confirm 2,800ºF.

Images and data from the Airborne Visible/Infrared Imaging Spectrometer (AVIRIS) recorded Sept. 16 and later can be found at the USGS website and in the PDF document “USGS Environmental Studies of the World Trade Center Area, New York City, after September 11, 2001.” AVIRIS provided the most detailed thermal data (including temperature), but other instruments were also used. Sadly, “[a]lthough AVIRIS temperature readings were released to the FDNY, this key information was not received by any of the mapping centers.” (“Engineering and Organizational Issues Related to The World Trade Center Terrorist Attack Volume 3, Emergency Response in the Wake of the World Trade Center Attack: The Remote Sensing Perspective,” by Charles K. Huyck and Beverley J. Adams, ImageCat, Inc., for The Multidisciplinary Center for Earthquake Engineering Research (MCEER), June, 2002, p. 39.)

Molten Metal

Molten metal – specifically steel – is a point of contention among researchers. NIST denies its presence, of course. Other researchers are also quick to point out that no good photographic evidence has been produced. However, there are many witnesses to this now almost mythical, molten steel.

No video exists of it, apparently, other than that which poured from the 80th floor of the South Tower prior to “collapse.” Watch many angles of this event in a compilation here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gPu9IqBfMIw . The official theory states the dripping metal is aluminum from the plane and/or office material. Some think it may be lead from the UPS batteries on the 81st floor: http://11-settembre.blogspot.com/2007/02/ups-on-81st-floor-of-wtc2.html . Discussion on that theory is here: http://the911forum.freeforums.org/wtc2-molten-metal-drip-t188.html .

It is debated, naturally, that no photos exist of molten steel – especially not in pools or streams, resolidified or not. (The meteorites are not ideal.) While photos have been offered as proof – see sharpprintinginc.com/911/index.php… – evidence of tampering (photoshopping, faking, etc.) has also been proven, it seems: sharpprintinginc.com/911/index.php… . Here’s that apparently fake, infamous photo:

molten steel fake Fake?
Original reportedly (0x1a.com) by ironworker Frank Silecchia See additional photo

Is it possible that all truly damning video and photographic evidence of molten steel has been successfully censored by THEM? What follows is all the testimony that answers, “Yes.”

Sonnenfeld - NO CAMERAS
“Warning! NO cameras or video equipment permitted! VIOLATORS will be prosecuted and equipment seized!” FEMA News Photo (source: http://picasaweb.google.com/Paula.sonnenfeld/WorldTradeCenterTorresGemelas#5249062942128699810 )

Molten steel was encountered primarily during excavation of debris around the South Tower when large hydraulic excavators were digging trenches 2 to 4 meters deep into the compacted/burning debris pile. There are both video tape and still photos of the molten steel being “dipped” out by the buckets of excavators. I’m not sure where you can get a copy.

Sorry I cannot provide personal confirmation.


Mark Loizeaux, President
2737 Merryman’s Mill Road
Phoenix, Maryland USA 21131
Tel: 1-410-667-XXXX
Fax: 1-410-667-XXXX

honway posted on 2003-12-13

– personal communication to “honway” posted at http://web.archive.org/web/20040109183256/http://libertypost.org/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=30926

The fires got very intense down there and actually melted beams where it was molten steel that was being dug up.

– Richard Riggs, Debris Removal Specialist in “World Trade Center: Rise and Fall of an American Icon,” THC, 2002. (Watch at http://www.911conspiracy.tv/mainstream_documentaries.html — His name and title shows at video run time 51:26. The quote is from vrt 54:00.

Said Kathy Dawkins, NY Dept. of Sanitation spokeswoman: “…NYDS played a major role in debris removal — everything from molten steel beams to human remains….” (Tom R. Arterburn, “D-Day: NY Sanitation Workers’ Challenge of a Lifetime” Apr. 1, 2002 at http://wasteage.com/mag/waste_dday_ny_sanitation )

September 16–Thermal imagery measures the progression of underground heat on about a weekly basis. These images are produced in 8-bit grayscale, with brightness levels of 0-255, 0 being the hottest and expressed as pure white. This is known as emissive data, or heat being given off from the structure from underlying hot debris or molten steel. Smoldering is yet undetectable, because potential fires appear cold until they are exposed to air. The first thermal images produced began on September 16, and are repeated on two day intervals. I would like to thank Jeff Bliss for the wonderful information and imagery he provided for this story, and acknowledge the 16-20 hours days CARSI Lab director Dr. Sean Ahearn has been putting in at the OEM. I would also like to credit Jeff Bliss, Constandinos Theophilides, and Bob Sklar for their tireless analysis. For a more in-depth look on CARSI, see the upcoming January special issue.

– Maddalena Romano, “Mapping Ground Zero,” GeoNews, Hunter College Dept. of Geography, Vol. 15, no. 1, October 2001 – http://www.geo.hunter.cuny.edu/geonews/october2001.pdf

“Turner himself crawled through an opening and down crumpled stairwells to the subway, five levels below ground. He remembers seeing in the darkness a distant, pinkish glow–molten metal dripping from a beam–but found no signs of life.” – Marci McDonald, “They came to help at Ground Zero. What they experienced they can’t forget” http://www.usnews.com/usnews/9_11/articles/911memories.htm

Now let’s hear from the only real journalist given unrestricted access to Ground Zero for the duration of the “cleanup.” He was below the surface of “the pile,” exploring with engineers on more than one occasion. Here he mentions “…the rattle of cascading debris, the ominous groaning of weakened structures overhead, or, in the early days, the streams of molten metal that leaked from the hot cores and flowed down broken walls inside the foundation hole.”

– William Langewiesche, American Ground: Unbuilding the World Trade Center, North Point Press, New York, 2002, p. 32.

“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.”
http://www.theatlantic.com/doc/200207/77nwash (See quote from Langewiesche himself above.)

Peter Tully of Tully Construction was the contractor responsible for the eastern quadrant of the pile– the South Tower, WTC 4 and 5, and the 425,000 square foot underground mall. Tully granted an interview that proved most interesting:

‘Think of the thousands of file cabinets, computers, and telephones in those towers – I never saw one – everything was pulverized,’ he said. ‘Everything that was above grade – above the 6th and 7th floor – disintegrated…it was like an explosion.’ Tully Construction specializes in concrete. I asked Mr. Tully if he had ever seen concrete pulverized as it was at the WTC.

‘No – never,’ he said.

Tully said that there were hot spots where he observed ‘literally molten steel.’ Asked about what could have caused such intense heat, Tully said, ‘Think about the jet fuel.’

– Christopher Bollyn, “Foreign Firms Destroyed Crucial Evidence,” August 14, 2002, online at http://www.bollyn.com/bollyn-9-11-articles-2002

“I saw melting of girders in World Trade Center.” – Structural Engineer Abolhassan Astaneh at http://www.pbs.org/newshour/bb/science/jan-june07/overpass_05-10.html

‘It’s still cooking,’ said Thomas O’Connor, who manages the construction and engineering work at the site for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which owned the buildings and arranged for the tour through the basement.

In the days after the collapse of the towers two months ago, the tangled steel was still so hot that it glowed like charcoal briquets in the unlighted basement, Mr. O’Connor said, adding, ‘For seven weeks it was surreal down here.’

– James Glanz, “Below Rubble, a Tour of a Still-Burning Hell,” NY Times, Nov. 15, 2001, New York Edition p. B1. Online at http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/15/nyregion/a-nation-challenged-the-site-below-rubble-a-tour-of-a-still-burning-hell.html (See the same article to hear this: “A three-foot stalagmite of steel, which looks for all the world like a drip candle, sits next to one of the immense steel columns that held up the north face of the tower.”)

“In the first few weeks, sometimes when a worker would pull a steel beam from the wreckage, the end of the beam would be dripping molten steel,” said Greg Fuchek, vice president of sales for LinksPoint Inc., maker of the GlobalPoint Global Positioning System receiver used to track debris and/or human remains recovery locations in the pile. (Trudy Walsh, “Handheld App Eased Recovery Tasks,” Government Computer News, Vol. 21 No. 27 a, 9/11/2002. Archived at http://911research.wtc7.net/cache/wtc/evidence/gcn_handheldapp.html )

Bronx firefighter and recovery worker Joe “Toolie” O’Toole remembered “seeing a crane lift a steel beam vertically from deep within the catacombs of Ground Zero. ‘It was dripping from the molten steel,’ he said.” (Jennifer Lin, “Recovery Worker Reflects On Months Spent At Ground Zero,” Knight Ridder Newspapers, May 29, 2002. Archived at http://911research.wtc7.net/cache/wtc/evidence/messengerinquirer_recoveryworker.html )

It took me a long time to realize it and I found myself actually one day wanting to get back. Why? Because I felt more comfortable. I realized it was actually warmer on site. The fires burned, up to 2,000 degrees, underground for quite a while before they actually got down to those areas and they cooled off.

I talked to many contractors and they said they actually saw molten metal trapped, beams had just totally had been melted because of the heat. So this was the kind of heat that was going on when those airplanes hit the upper floors. It was just demolishing heat.

– Herb Trimpe, “The Chaplain’s Tale,” transcript of audio interview at RecordOnline.com, archived at http://911research.wtc7.net/cache/wtc/evidence/recordonline_chaplain.html

“‘Fires are still actively burning and the smoke is very intense,’ reports Alison Geyh, PhD. ‘In some pockets now being uncovered, they are finding molten steel.'” Rod Graham, “Mobilizing Public Health,” Johns Hopkins Public Health Magazine, Late Fall, 2001. Online at http://www.jhsph.edu/Publications/Special/Welch.htm

A veteran of disasters from the Mississippi floods [to] Mt. St. Helens, Burger said it reminded him most of the volcano, if he forgot he was in downtown Manhattan. ‘Feeling the heat, seeing the molten steel, the layers upon layers of ash, like lava, it reminded me of Mt. St. Helen’s [sic] and the thousands who fled that disaster,’ he said.

Francesca Lyman, “Messages In the Dust,” National Environmental Health Association, Sept. 2003. Online at http://www.neha.org/9-11%20report/index-The.html (Ron Burger was “a public health advisor at the National Center for Environmental Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, who arrived in New York to help September 11.”)

Describing a speaking appearance by Leslie Robertson (structural engineer who worked on the World Trade Center), at the National Council of Structural Engineers Associations 9th Annual Conference, one source wrote, “As of 21 days after the attack, the fires were still burning and molten steel was still running.” (James Williams, “SEAUNEWS, The Newsletter of the Structural Engineers Association of Utah,” October 2001, p. 3. Source file expired: -http://www.seau.org/SEAUNews-2001-10.pdf. Articles quoting this source include: http://wtc.nist.gov/media/AE911Truth-NIST-Written-Submission12-18-07.pdf and http://911research.wtc7.net/wtc/evidence/moltensteel.html )

Firefighter Captain Philip Ruvolo testified to the presence of molten steel on camera. “You’d get down below and you’d see molten steel– molten steel running down the channelways, like you were in a foundry– like lava.” His FDNY brothers agreed with his observation. See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=1m1s . Source is Etienne Sauret’s film “Collateral Damages” (2003).

A review of of Etienne Sauret’s documentary “Collateral Damage” describes firemen recalling “heat so intense they encountered rivers of molten steel.” (Lumenick, Lou, “Unflinching Look Among the Ruins,” New York Post, March 3, 2004.)

Thanks for much of this collection to http://0x1a.com/#[[World%20Trade%20Center%20Hot%20Spots]]

“They showed us many fascinating slides” he continued, “ranging from molten metal which was still red hot weeks after the event, to 4-inch thick steel plates sheared and bent in the disaster.”
– Dr. Keith Eaton at http://web.archive.org/web/20030422113455/http://www.istructe.org.uk/about/files/president/Tour-2002-NewYork.pdf

“Smoke constantly poured from the peaks. 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.” – Guy Lounsbury of New York Air National Guard’s 109th Air Wing at http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qa3731/is_200112/ai_n9015802#continue

“He remembers seeing in the darkness a distant, pinkish glow — molten metal dripping from a beam — but found no signs of life.” – Lee Turner of The Boone County Firefighters at http://www.usnews.com/usnews/9_11/articles/911memories.htm

“Richard Garlock, a structural engineer for LERA said ‘Going below, it was smoky and really hot… The debris past the columns was red-hot, molten, running.’

The steel was so hot from the jet fuel that, uh, it was literally steaming. Your boots would melt in certain areas. That’s how hot it was. The steel was coming out red in certain areas for the first couple weeks, at least.

– Michael Casale, Project Supt., Mazzocchi Wrecking in Modern Marvels Demolition segment on WTC Ground Zero

“Vance Deisingnore, OSHA Officer at WTC, reported the following to Jim McKay, Post-Gazette Staff Writer, on September 11, 2002 ‘a fire truck 10 feet below the ground that was still burning two weeks after the Tower collapsed, its metal so hot that it looked like a vat of molten steel.'”

“‘The [NYFD] people who called us had been killed,’ Atlas considered as she surveyed the tons and acres of wreckage. ‘Nobody’s going to be alive.’ Fires burned and molten steel flowed in the pile of ruins still settling beneath her feet.” – “K-9/11: Tracking the Rescuers’ Trauma,” Summer 2002, on Sarah Atlas of New Jersey’s Task Force One Urban Search and Rescue – http://www.sas.upenn.edu/sasalum/newsltr/summer2002/k911.html

“Father Edward A. Malloy, on site 40 days after the disaster stated ‘Firefighters atop a number of ladder trucks were spraying in the areas of greatest smoke. The average temperature beneath the rubble is said to be 1500F so that when steel is brought up it is molten and takes two or three days to cool down.'”

“Guy Lounsbury with the 109th Air Wing of the New York Air National Guard wrote ‘The men who work on this must constantly change their boots as the heat melts them. Two weeks after the attack, one fireman told us that there was still molten steel at the heart of the towers’ remains.'”

“A group of veteran ironworkers eating lunch while staring at the steel skeleton of a new building going up on West Third Street when one commented on ‘how much easier it was to eat a sandwich in front of steel that was strong and straight and new, not molten and mangled and laden with debris.'”
– Corey Kilgannon, “Ironworkers’ Job of Clearing Ground Zero Is Over, but the Trauma Lingers,” NY Times, Nov. 11, 2002 athttp://www.nytimes.com/2002/11/11/nyregion/ironworkers-job-of-clearing-ground-zero-is-over-but-the-trauma-lingers.html?sec=health

Fire Department Chief Mike Donoho of Texas Task Force 1 Urban Search and Rescue described the scope of the destruction, ‘Everything had its own look. In the area surrounding what was the two twin towers, there were several buildings still standing that were burned from top to bottom, and some of them were damaged by the collapse. But the two towers — they were 110-story buildings. And there was nothing that you could put your hands on that resembled anything that would tell you this once was two 110-story office buildings. What you had were large columns of steel that were just stuck into massive amounts of molten steel and other metals, that had just fused together from the heat and bonded together from the strength of the collapse. We dug and we dug and we dug, and we cut and we cut and we cut, and we did not see anything that resembled any type of furniture, any type of personal belongings. We found some pieces of things like a telephone, things like that. I think we found credit cards a few times, and we found a couple of stuffed animals. But you would expect to see, like, a bunch of desks, a bunch of chairs. The only way I can explain it is, if you take a car and put it in one of those machines where they crush it and make it look like a cube, and you can’t recognize what it is, that’s what the whole area looked like. It looked like a massive, molten mess that had been fused together, like a car that had been cubed and crushed. With all that heavy, heavy stuff, there were wires, rebar, concrete. Most of it was just steel. A lot of what we were walking on was just molten steel.’


“The workers go through three pairs of rubber boots a day because they melt in the three-week-old fire of molten metal and jet fuel. The health hazards are everywhere: the fire, molten metal, the lack of breathable air and 3000+ decomposing bodies.”

“Each story has its differences. Some told of 10-hour car drives and arriving in the black of night, the same calendar day as the towers were hit. Others remembered taking military transport – a C- 141 in Deeds’ case – a few days later. Others remember molten metal still dripping under the Pile more than a week after the attack.” – http://findarticles.com/p/articles/mi_qn4176/is_20061210/ai_n16903160

“Some beams pulled from the wreckage are still red hot more than 7 weeks after the attack, and it is suspected that temperatures beneath the debris pile are well in excess of 1,000°F.” – http://web.archive.org/web/20050520232345/http://www.liro.com/lironews.pdf

“Ferer was one of several people in a visiting United Services Organization (USO)-Tribeca group who had lost family members. As they visited troops, they carried Port Authority pins, baseball caps, and a piece of molten steel from the WTC.” – http://www3.interscience.wiley.com/journal/118717317/abstract

No matter when they went, the odor of molten steel, pulverized concrete and charred flesh burned their throats, lingering in their lungs. http://goliath.ecnext.com/coms2/gi_0199-3115751/Answering-the-call-from-ground.html

It was hot.

New York mayor Rudy Giuliani said “They were standing on top of a cauldron. They were standing on top of fires 2,000 degrees that raged for a hundred days.” – http://nymag.com/news/features/28517

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.


The ‘hot spots,’ where intensely burning debris generated temperatures in excess of 1300 degrees Fahrenheit, posed a significant danger to relief workers. NASA had an instrument that could provide information that would be useful to emergency responders. NASA’s Airborne Visible infrared Imaging Spectrometer (http://0x1a.com/#AVIRIS]AVIRIS) science instrument was capable of providing data that could be used to filter smoke and locate extreme hot spots.


“The temperature at the core of ‘the pile,’ is near 2000 degrees Fahrenheit, according to fire officials.” http://web.archive.org/web/20010918182531/http://abcnews.go.com/sections/us/DailyNews/WTC_recovery010918.html

“Firefighters and other responders contended with intense heat associated with the super-heated steel for weeks; some were coming back from shifts with the bottoms of their boots melted.”

“Two weeks after the attack, the rubble, the Pile, is still 7 stories tall. Below, in the Pit it burns like the gates of hell. It is 1200 degrees, so hot that the steel work lifted by the grapplers comes out soft. I’ve never seen anything like this.” – http://www.ukfssart.org.uk/wtc%20ground%20zero.htm

The dogs were trained to sniff out bodies. They weren’t trained to recognize heat. So when they hopped on a smoldering I-beam [some of which were hot enough to melt the firefighters’ rubber-soled boots] they’d get hurt. Some of them even ignited,” said Bellone, who added that the firefighters were often slowed down because they stopped to care for their four-footed comrades, many of which could not be saved. “We retired a lot of them because of burns or just stress,” he said. The Federal Emergency Management Agency team assembled at the site included scores of veterinarians.


“Firemen and hazardous materials experts stated that, six weeks after 9/11, ‘There are pieces of steel being pulled out [from as far as six stories underground] that are still cherry red’ and ‘the blaze is so ‘far beyond a normal fire’ that it is nearly impossible to draw conclusions about it based on other fires.”
http://www.nydailynews.com/2001-11-01/News_and_Views/City_Beat/a-130539.asp – also http://www.libertypost.org/cgi-bin/readart.cgi?ArtNum=30926

“Ground Zero at the World Trade Center was a search site like few others after a major disaster event. Multiple sources of hazards were everywhere. There were shards of steel piled on steel, a two-million-ton pile of debris, red hot steel beams still being pulled from the earth, crevasses, holes, unstable ground, still burning fires, possible asbestos exposure, and caustic fumes that may have contained mixtures of benzene, methane gas and other chemicals.” http://michigan.gov/documents/CIS_WSH_minwsw02_28059_7.pdf (maloney.house.gov)

“The first indication of ‘Ground Zero’ is the smoke. It’s still smoking. Many of the beams are still red hot as they are uncovered, and start new fires as the oxygen reaches them.” – Congressman Pete Hoekstra hoekstra.house.gov

The pile of debris after 30 days of removal operations was still gigantic, over three stories high, with structural steel projecting 7-10 stories into the air. The steam, dust, noise, steel and myriad activities were larger than anything I have ever seen. Temperatures in the pile were over 1,200 °F. Every time an area was opened, fire started in any buried combustible debris. Water trucks and fire engines were used continually. The high temperature debris and water created steam.

http://www.spk.usace.army.mil/cespk-pao/jan-02/jan02-01.html (cached copy)

“It was determined that 3 million gallons of water were hosed on site in the fire-fighting efforts between 9/11 and 9/21″… “In addition, there were 2 episodes of rain during the same 10 day period after the attack: on 9/14 and 9/20, totaling 0.9 million gallons of water per Bathtub area. Considering the neighboring area, one can take 1 million gallons from the rain. Therefore, a total of 4 million gallons of water percolated through the debris in the first 10 days and collected at the bottom of the Bathtub.”
http://www.llnl.gov/tid/lof/documents/pdf/240430.pdf http://www.marinefirefighting.com/Pages/Newsletters/Newsletter9.htm

“2000 gallons of Pyrocool FEF foaming agent were sprayed on the ‘pile’ starting September 28th.” – http://www.newscientist.com/article.ns?id=dn1634]newscientist.com

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. Steel beams pulled from the debris at times are so hot they are cherry red. Benzene, propylene, styrene and other chemicals generated by the combustion of computers, office products and fuels drift through the air.

– Eric Lipton and Andrew C. Revkin, “A NATION CHALLENGED: THE FIREFIGHTERS; With Water and Sweat, Fighting the Most Stubborn Fire,” NY Times, Nov. 19, 2001, p. B1 at http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/19/nyregion/nation-challenged-firefighters-with-water-sweat-fighting-most-stubborn-fire.html

Other Buildings

“The crater” of WTC 6 was also suspect, although debris from WTC 1 no doubt contributed to the cave-in. Keep in mind the FEMA investigators were not allowed access. See their “Building Performance Study,” chapter 4, at http://www.fema.gov/pdf/library/fema403_ch4.pdf — titled “WTC 4, 5, and 6” despite the total concentration on Building 5. Kenneth Holden, Director of the entity managing the recovery operation at Ground Zero, the NY Department of Design and Construction (DDC), testified to the 9/11 Commission (See http://www.9-11commission.gov/archive/hearing1/9-11Commission_Hearing_2003-04-01.htm ) on C-SPAN2 TV (See http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=3m51s ). He said “Underground it was still so hot that molten metal dripped down the sides of the wall from Building 6.” Molten concrete, which helped form the “meteorites” mentioned above, also flowed like lava at the US Customs House (WTC 6), according to the New York Police Museum display seen in photographs here: http://0x1a.com/#[[World%20Trade%20Center%20%22Meteorites%22]] Guns were embedded in concrete. Building 6 was also the location of the fused steel cross seen in photos here: http://picasaweb.google.com/F.Archiver/D2p1_GodsHouseWTC6?authkey=r_ZzJMbgTrY# . Hear more about the amazing cross here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3SLIzSCt_cg#t=4m0s .

Don’t forget about WTC 7:

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.

– James Glanz, “Engineers Suspect Diesel Fuel in Collapse of 7 World Trade Center,” NY Times, Nov. 29, 2001, at http://www.nytimes.com/2001/11/29/nyregion/29TOWE.html

WTC7 steel corrosion

This and one other sample of steel are featured in the “Limited Metallurgical Examination” done in Appendix C of the FEMA Building Performance Study found here: http://wtc.nist.gov/media/AppendixC-fema403_apc.pdf — authored in part by Dr. Jonathan Barnett. The 2008 BBC documentary “Conspiracy Files – 9/11: The Third Tower” discounts/dismisses this evidence here: http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=9072062020229593250 — at vrt 48:40. However, that documentary doesn’t mention the final paragraph of the Appendix C document, headed “Suggestions for Future Research.” (Emphasis added.)

The severe corrosion and subsequent erosion of Samples 1 and 2 are a very unusual event. No clear explanation for the source of the sulfur has been identified. The rate of corrosion is also unknown. It is possible that this is the result of long-term heating in the ground following the collapse of the buildings. It is also possible that the phenomenon started prior to collapse and accelerated the weakening of the steel structure. A detailed study into the mechanisms of this phenomenon is needed to determine what risk, if any, is presented to existing steel structures exposed to severe and long-burning fires.

Uncertain mainstream info on this issue is found here: http://www.wpi.edu/News/Transformations/2002Spring/steel.html and justified suspicion is found here: http://911research.wtc7.net/wtc/evidence/metallurgy/index.html — considering no other steel from Building 7 was saved for study.

Barnett was professor of fire protection engineering at the Worcester Polytechnic Institute and, according to the NY Times, “part of an assessment team organized by the American Society of Civil Engineers and the Federal Emergency Management Agency to examine the performance of several buildings during the attacks.” (Glanz, Nov. 29, 2001) That article continues: “If further studies of the debris confirm the findings of extremely high temperature, Dr. Barnett said, ‘the smoking gun would be the fuel.'”

This “smoking gun” has apparently been found among the pervasive dust from the events. It is remaining active thermitic (explosive) material, or aluminothermics. Please read the paper, “Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe” here: http://www.bentham.org/open/tocpj/articles/V002/7TOCPJ.pdfhttp://www.bentham-open.org/pages/content.php?TOCPJ/2009/00000002/00000001/7TOCPJ.SGM — download here: http://femr2.ucoz.com/load/1-1-0-3 — and learn more here: http://911research.wtc7.net/essays/thermite/explosive_residues.html . Danish television (TV2News) featured the story April 6, 2009, by hosting one of the authors, Niels Harrit, in a program available to watch with English subtitles here: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8_tf25lx_3o — and for download here: http://agenda911.dk/harrit/tv2gomorgen/


A main ingredient in the WTC debris was, of course, the dust. It was concrete and sheet rock, most people figured. It was everywhere in Manhattan for weeks – months – after 9/11. Before the rain Friday the 14th, the dust was inches thick in places. Therefore, doubting the chain of evidence for the dust used in the above study is not a valid argument against that evidence. The nanocomposite thermitic “chips” were not the only apparent proof of a conspiracy found in the dust. We have copious evidence in the form of spherical iron particles – steel that was boiled, vaporized in temperatures far exceeding that of jet fuel or office fires. Not only steel, but also glass.

Please scan through the published work of Steven E. Jones, Jeffrey Farrer, Gregory S. Jenkins, Frank Legge, James Gourley, Kevin Ryan, Daniel Farnsworth, and Crockett Grabbe, “Extremely high temperatures during the World Trade Center destruction.” In addition to elemental composition analysis using a scanning electron microscope, you will find this micrograph, or optical microscope image of WTC dust plainly showing dried molten material:

molten spheres in WTC dust

Discussion and debate can be found here: “The Problem with Microspheres” — http://www.sharpprintinginc.com/911/index… . Amazingly, a 9/13 ABC News investigation into the dust confirmed the steel particles, even with some amount of suspicion, it seemed: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8LW6b8JF5ls#t=1m39s — “But most interesting in the mix they are looking, they think, at specks of steel that used to be beams and elevators….”

spherical iron particle - microsphere

There is yet another apparent proof of orchestrated demolition relating to the dust: the dense, almost pyroclastic flow. The argument shows that the energy required to generate the volume of dust (specifically after the North Tower “collapse”) was decidedly too high to be explained by a gravity-driven collapse. Please see http://911research.wtc7.net/wtc/analysis/proofs/volume.html — by Jim Hoffman.

Quickly, here is a list of links to the major studies of WTC dust, in no particular order:

1. http://www.ehponline.org/members/2002/110p703-714lioy/lioy-full.html
Environmental Health Perspectives Volume 110, Number 7, July 2002
“Characterization of the Dust/Smoke Aerosol that Settled East of the World Trade Center (WTC) in Lower Manhattan after the Collapse of the WTC 11 September 2001”

2. http://www.nyenvirolaw.org/WTC/130%20Liberty%20Street/Mike%20Davis%20LMDC%20130%20Liberty%20Documents/Signature%20of%20WTC%20dust/WTC%20Dust%20Signature.Composition%20and%20Morphology.Final.pdf
“Signature Assessment 130 Liberty Street Property,” RJ LeeGroup, Inc., 12/2003 (see image above, spherical-iron-particle-magnified_w.jpg )

3. http://pubs.usgs.gov/of/2001/ofr-01-0429/
US Geological Survey. Huge data collection. (See the USGS pic “iron rich sphere” at Jim Hoffman’s site: …which quotes Steven Jones’s earlier paper (“Revisiting 9/11/2001 — Applying The Scientific Method,” Journal of 9/11 Studies, 5/27/07 at http://www.journalof911studies.com/volume/200704/JonesWTC911SciMethod.pdf — “Iron melts at 1538ºC, so the presence of these numerous iron-rich spheres implies a very high temperature.”

4. http://delta.ucdavis.edu/WTC.htm
“Analysis of Aerosols from the World Trade Center Collapse Site, New York, October 2 to October 30, 2001” and “Trade Center Debris Pile Was a Chemical Factory, Says New Study” September 10, 2003


The overwhelming evidence for impossibly high temperatures during and/or after the “collapses” has been hidden from the public. Where it has seeped through into the major media, the evidence has faced a psychological blockade, borne of patriotism and faith in the acceptably inept powers that be.

Please decide for yourself after reading an article from the opposing point of view, that there was no molten steel, courtesy of 911myths.com.

UPDATE: See a NEW video release from the International Center for 9/11 Studies NIST FOIA, 911datasets release 29, folder 42A0346 – G29D32 —

Les Robertson Confirms Molten Metal in WTC Basement

Les Robertson [of LERA, the primary structural engineering firm involved in building the Trade Center], in presentation at Stanford University, confirms that he saw a “river of molten steel” at the B1 level of the WTC debris pile. This video also has a clip of Robertson confirming that the WTC Towers were designed to absorb the impact of a Boeing 707, the largest airplane of its time.

Written by Matt

January 24, 2010 at 2:45 am