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Dr. Steven Jones
A Reader Rebuts and Editor Responds:Fort Fairfield Journal, July 18, 2007, p. 6
I am writing in regard to your story Thermate Residue Found in WTC Dust (Fort Fairfield Journal, June 20, 2007, p. 8)
Thermate and also thermite are universally used to butt weld vertical steel columns in high rise construction. A prefabricated thermate collar is clamped around the joint and then ignited. The intense chemical fire fuses the metal. Scorching, discoloration, and residue remain on the steel for a short distance on either side of the weld. I observed such a welding operation in the 80`s in Sacramento.
Articles of this type are deplorable in their intent and seem to be directed to the susceptible and the uninformed.
As to the collapse of the WTC, steel will soften and deform at temperatures far less than found in an intense fire such as on a ship, or in a building. You would think that on a steel ship there isn't much to burn and that a fire should be inconsequential but shipboard fires are impossibly hot....the steel glows, paint and cables burn, gasses ignite, etc. but not nearly to the degree found in the WTC. Floors designed to withstand their dead load plus their live load cannot withstand the mass and inertial forces from the fall of the floor above. This cascading effect started somewhere above the aircrafts impact point where the heat was most intense.
Fort Fairfield, Maine
We’ve had this conversation before. Your points are duly noted and I do respect your experience in this subject; but, we still have the "yellow-orange" substance issuing from the buildings, and crystal clear evidence of squibs going off in sequence below the plane impacts as the buildings are falling (that video from the major networks, as recorded live that day).
I am familiar with thermite welding. It is generally done on rails where no seam or splice is desired or as a quick fix to ship hulls. A mold, the shape of the rail or steel is enclosed around the splice, thermite activated inside of it and the two pieces of steel are melted together to form one solid piece. It is said to be an inferior weld due to the low carbon content unless oxy/acetylene is also used. I have been unable to confirm if this process was done on the WTC construction, but doubt it was since the vertical support columns were nearly 2-1/2 feet by 4 feet in dimension and a smooth, seamless joint would be unnecessary for the extra effort it would have taken, thus making a thermite mold and weld impractical. Also, the sulfurized derivative of Thermite - Thermate - which was found in the rubble of the WTC towers is not generally used in Thermite welding.
Even if we ignore the squibs, molten substance and Thermate residue, I'm still not convinced jet fuel brought those buildings down.
While I agree with your thesis that steel softens at lower temperatures than it melts and could cause steel-framed buildings to collapse, in October, 2004 a steel-framed skyscraper in Caracas, Venezuela burned for 17 hours without collapsing; in May, 1988 the First Interstate Bank in Los Angeles burned 3.5 hours without collapsing; On 9/11/01 WTC Building 5 burned for 6 hours and in 1975, the North WTC tower caught fire and burned for 3 hours, spreading between floors - neither fell as a result of weakened steel. Finally, in February, 2005 the Windsor Tower in Madrid, Spain, again a steel-framed building, burned for nearly 20 hours, engulfing the entire building in a raging inferno - only to have that building's entire steel skeleton remain standing after the fire was out. None of these steel-framed buildings collapsed from intense fires. Why? The 1975 WTC North was a hotter fire and burned three times as long as 9/11’s 90 minutes of smoke. I also need to know why the ground in the basement under the rubble was still simmering at around 1100°F up to eight weeks after the collapse if the only source of fire/heat (the jet fuel) would have been near the top of the pile - they even let that one slip out on 60 Minutes with Ed Bradley. I'm not even going to go into Galileo's Law of Falling Bodies and how the buildings could not have fallen at free-fall speed with all that resistance. I guess all the thousands of joints on the floors below broke all at the same time, and symmetrically, and exactly the same way for both buildings allowing for a perfect vertical drop twice in a row. With those kinds of odds cashing in, I think I'll bet on High Button Shoes at the horse track this summer.
Also, what about WTC 7 - no plane hit it and it collapsed neatly on itself in its own footprint in under 7 seconds, hours after the two main towers fell, and it being blocks away. Stopping the video frames shows a "crimp" in the middle of the building, allowing the sides to cave into the middle - curiously the same way controlled demolitions are done. As for "rubble" hitting it, it was further away than WTC 3, 4, 5, and 6 which were contained in the main block.
This member of the 'jury' still hasn’t been convinced that jet fuel alone was the sole cause of the collapses on 9/11.
Fort Fairfield Journal
Thermate Residue Found in WTC Dust
Indicates Evidence of Controlled Demolitions
By: David Deschesne
Editor/Publisher, Fort Fairfield Journal June 20, 2007 p. 8
9/11 Conspiracy theorists are everywhere. Many different theories abound about the collapse of the World Trade Towers and most of them are way off-base. Still, one must ask the question: If thermate residue was found, as one University professor indicates, and if thermate is a component or product of explosives, then why was it found in the WTC dust?
Just prior to the collapse of the World Trade Center’s south tower on 9/11/01, there appeared a curious yellow-orange molten material issuing from its north face.
The official government story concluded this was aluminum alloy from the aircraft and engines.
“It’s true you could melt aluminum, but the orange color indicates it is close to 1,000 degrees Celsius,” said Dr. Steven Jones, former Physics professor at Brigham Young University. “So, if aluminum melts at 475 to 640 degrees how are you going to heat it up until it gets orange? Pure liquid aluminum is silvery in color.”
Dr. Jones has conducted his own tests by heating a steel pot containing aluminum to a point where the pot was yellow-orange in color, or around 1000 degrees Celsius, in order to observe the characteristics of molten aluminum. “The aluminum at that temperature was still silvery,” he said. “We also poured it on rusty steel to see if there was some reaction. There was no reaction observed as we poured it on.”
In attempting to corroborate the official story that the yellow-orange molten substance was aluminum, Dr. Jones introduced into his molten aluminum materials that would have been found in the buildings, such as gypsum wall board and crushed concrete in order to attempt to get a reaction. “We got no reaction.”
The official story then states that the aluminum was likely mixed with large amounts of partially burned solid organic materials such as furniture, carpet, partitions and computers, which can display an orange glow.
“According to their report the way you get aluminum to glow orange is to add these organic materials from the offices,” said Dr. Jones.
“In order to verify the accuracy of their statements we do experiments. We put wood chips into our molten aluminum, which caused them to burn off immediately.” He then tried adding wood ash, plastic and carpet pieces in order to get the aluminum to glow orange. “We were at it for an hour - the ash wouldn’t mix in. We added glass, melted it in and nothing happened. The aluminum remained silvery in color.”
In his experiment, Dr. Jones concluded that molten aluminum can not be made to glow orange. So, what was the yellow-orange substance pouring out of the south tower?
Steel starts to glow yellow-orange around 1100 degrees Celsius, but does not flow until it reaches 1538 degrees. Dr. Jones believes a substance called Thermate, an incendiary used in controlled demolitions containing iron oxide, aluminum powder and sulfur, may be the answer.
Sulfur acts on hot steel as salt does on ice, by lowering its melting point. “We proved with our experiments that you could have flowing steel even when it gets down to those yellow/orange temperatures when it should otherwise be solidified.”
Worcester Polytechnic Institute conducted research for FEMA on steel obtained from WTC-7 and the two World Trade Towers. “In these samples, using electron microscopy they found sulfur,” said Dr. Jones. “Their report cites evidence of a severe, high temperature corrosion attack on the steel, including oxidation and sulfurization.”
Dr. Jones procured some samples of the WTC dust from an apartment owner near “ground zero” who had the foresight to save some of it in a plastic bag. He found traces of small iron spheres in the dust. “Like an oxy-acetylene torch cutting iron, thermite and thermate also tends to cause molten iron to form into these small spheres due to its surface tension.” Dr. Jones does note that the fires did not burn hot enough to cause the iron to melt in this way at either of the buildings.
After examining the steel globules found in the WTC dust under an electron microscope, he found they matched steel globules found in the residue of a thermate reaction since they exhibited the same iron-aluminum-sulfur signature. “This method is what is used by investigators when they’re looking for evidence of Thermite or Thermate residue,” he said.
Since the buildings fell at near free-fall speed, private citizen investigators have been searching for evidence of controlled demolitions - the only way buildings of this size could fall that fast. These recent findings seem to point in that direction.
Dr. Jones recently gave a presentation on his findings. The video is available online to those who have a high speed internet connection. It can be viewed at: