Scholars for 9/11 Truth

Comments on Some of NIST's FAQs

by Charles Pegelow

As an introduction: The FEMA / Kean Commission Report was a flawed investigation. The most important tool of any criminal investigators is the eyewitness and first responder accounts; if for no other reason, they were there at the scene. For example, the first thing the police do at an accident scene is to gather all witness accounts and within a week the insurance companies are also telephoning the witnesses to take their testimony. In addition to the NYFD, the NYPD also had reported finding a suspicious device and another report stated than they thought a van in the basement of WTC1 had exploded with a bomb.

In addition to the firemen calling the Commission a cover up, there are the victim's family organizations that are saying the same thing.

To give you some perspective on what a comprehensive, thorough, scientific investigation looks like, please recall the Space Shuttle Columbia accident. Although there may remain minor questions concerning some of the periphery conclusions, the report, on the whole, stands without major dispute within the scientific community. Contrast this with the FEMA 9/11 report and its major inconsistencies.

The commission did gather many experts but did not provide them with the full information they needed. FEMA hampered and distorted the investigation of the professionals they hired. For example,

  1. Mr. Abolhassan Astaneh-Asl stated before the Committee on Science of the U.S. House of Representatives 6 March 2002 Hearing: FEMA did not provide "videotapes and photographs taken on 9/11 and the following days and copies of the engineering drawings. At this time, having the videotapes, photographs and copies of the drawings not only is useful, but also is essential in enabling us to conduct any analysis of the collapse and to formulate conclusions from our effort";

  2. the same story of hampering investigations comes from other scientists and engineers, see Learning from 9/11: Understanding the Collapse of the World Trade Center.

  3. on 26 October 2004 An alliance of 100 prominent Americans and 40 family members of those killed on 9/11 Respected Leaders and Families Launch 9/11 Truth Statement Demanding Deeper Investigation into the Events of 9/11.

In conclusion, FEMA / Kean Commission Report was a flawed investigation and it needs to be reopened.

An open, independent of the Federal Government, public inquiry into the attacks should be set up under an independent judicial body with power to subpoena evidence.

1. If the World Trade Center (WTC) towers were designed to withstand multiple impacts by Boeing 707 aircraft, why did the impact of individual 767s cause so much damage? Here it is instructive to consider the concept of global vs. local damage. From the standpoint of global collapse, that is, evidence that overturns [the official account]is easy to show because it revolves about (a) resistance of the columns to overstressed conditions and (b) the impact shear was less than the designed wind condition. We also have the following statements about the original design:

  • The Richard Roth Telegram: According to the calculations of engineers, who worked on the Towers' design, all the columns on one side of a Tower could be cut, as well as the two corners and some of the columns on each adjacent side, and the building would still be strong enough to withstand a 100-mile-per-hour wind.

  • According to Hyman Brown, a University of Colorado civil engineering professor and the World Trade Center's construction manager: "meaning that more than nine-tenths of the columns at the same level would have to fail before the weight of the top could have overcome the support capacity of the remaining columns". See Towers' Design Parameters.

  • According to Matthys Levy (chairman of Weidlinger Assoc) who did independent computer structural analysis study for Larry Silverman (and also had a set of the drawings); states: (a) the failure of the trusses did not cause the tower collapse, (b) the fires did not lead to floor collapses, (c) fire temperatures were lower than typical office fires, and (d) "to create the vertical collapses that we saw in the Twin Towers all of the 47 very large columns that comprised the core had to fail at the same instant" What failed, when and how?.

  • At this point we are left with only one question: How could "all 47 core columns fail at the same instance"? Fires could not do that. This was not addressed in FEMA's report.

    From the standpoint of local design, we do not have any verifiable information from the 1968 design. However, we note that:

    • The airplanes initial impact column damage (FEMA WTC Building Performance Study Chapter 2). Perimeter columns 31/36WTC1 & 27/32WTC2 perimeter columns were destroyed, and WTC1 & WTC2 core columns were destroyed).

    • We, off course could expect substantial local damage under the circumstances, but FEMA is attempting to prove the truss theory, the pancake collapse, the truss bolts theory, and so on along with fires as a reasonable collapse theory for the core columns. This is about as reasonable if I told you that you could cut some branches on a tree and the whole tree would fall down. Sorry, the real world doesn't work that way.

2. Why did NIST not consider a "controlled demolition" hypothesis with matching computer modeling and explanation as it did for the "pancake theory" hypothesis? A key critique of NIST's work lies in the complete lack of analysis supporting a "progressive collapse" after the point of collapse initiation and the lack of consideration given to a controlled demolition hypothesis.

3. How could the WTC towers have collapsed without a controlled demolition since no steel-frame, high-rise buildings have ever before or since been brought down due to fires? Temperatures due to fire don't get hot enough for buildings to collapse.

4. Weren't the puffs of smoke that were seen, as the collapse of each WTC tower starts, evidence of controlled demolition explosions?

5. Why were two distinct spikes--one for each tower--seen in seismic records before the towers collapsed? Isn't this indicative of an explosion occurring in each tower?

6. How could the WTC towers collapse in only 11 seconds (WTC 1) and 9 seconds (WTC 2)--speeds that approximate that of a ball dropped from similar height in a vacuum (with no air resistance)?

7a. How could the steel have melted if the fires in the WTC towers weren't hot enough to do so?


7b. Since the melting point of steel is about 2,700 degrees Fahrenheit, the temperature of jet fuel fires does not exceed 1,800 degrees Fahrenheit and Underwriters Laboratories (UL) certified the steel in the WTC towers to 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit for six hours, how could fires have impacted the steel enough to bring down the WTC towers?

  • The February 13, 1975 WTC1 North Tower Fire. The 1975 fire was more intense than the 9/11 fires is evident from the fact that it caused the 11th floor east side windows to break and flames could be seen pouring from these broken windows. This indicates a temperature greater than 700°C. In the 9/11 fires the windows were not broken by the heat (only by the aircraft impact) indicating a temperature below 700°C. < wtc_1975_fire.html> lists NY Times articles.

8. We know that the sprinkler systems were activated because survivors reported water in the stairwells. If the sprinklers were working, how could there be a 'raging inferno' in the WTC towers?

9. If thick black smoke is characteristic of an oxygen-starved, lower temperature, less intense fire, why was thick black smoke exiting the WTC towers when the fires inside were supposed to be extremely hot?

  • Smoke impedes radiant heat flux to surrounding surfaces.

10. Why were people seen in the gaps left by the plane impacts if the heat from the fires behind them was so excessive?

Open flames produce direct, radiant, and infrared heat. Both radiant and infrared heat are blocked by smoke and solid objects. A reconstruction of the arrangement of the room (on paper if not in actual fact) is critical to this assessment. This may be done by witness statements, physical remains, burn indicators, or pre-fire photos or even videos. Stoll Curve - A plot of thermal energy and time predicted to cause a pain sensation, or a second degree burn, in human tissue. *As defined by the American Society for Testing Materials (ASTM) in Standard F1002

11. Why do some photographs show a yellow stream of molten metal pouring down the side of WTC2 that NIST claims was aluminum from the crashed plane although aluminum burns with a white glow?

12. Did the NIST investigation look for evidence of the WTC towers being brought down by controlled demolition? Was the steel tested for explosives or thermite residues? The combination of thermite and sulfur (called thermate) "slices through steel like a hot knife through butter."

13. Why did the NIST investigation not consider reports of molten steel in the wreckage from the WTC towers?

14. Why is the NIST investigation of the collapse of WTC 7 (the 47-story office building that collapsed on Sept. 11, 2001, hours after the towers) taking so long to complete? Is a controlled demolition hypothesis being considered to explain the collapse?