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NIST Releases Report On WTC 7 Collapse 1331

Posted by Soulskill
from the play-nice dept.
photonic writes "After three years of study, the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) finally released its report on the collapse of World Trade Center building 7. The main conclusion is that the building came down due to fire, not due to debris damage or some conspiracy demolition team. The fire started pretty small after the collapse of WTC 1, but was left to burn several floors out completely. The important finding is that the collapse was triggered by thermal expansion of beams, which could detach asymmetrically loaded girders from the main columns. Some limited pancaking of floors then caused a lack of lateral support and buckling of a single column. This triggered the failure of the entire core of the building, which finally fell down as a single piece. Crackpot theories can be discussed elsewhere; please limit the discussion to the science here. All documents can be found at NIST's WTC page, which read like a porn magazine for finite element junkies. Simulation movies are also available. And yes, they used Beowulf clusters to do the simulations, some of which lasted for several months."
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NIST Releases Report On WTC 7 Collapse

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  • nooo (Score:4, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:17PM (#24727209)

    And yes, they used Beowulf clusters to do the simulations, some of which lasted for several months."

    No! You stole my +5 funny!!

  • by cmacb (547347) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:18PM (#24727221) Homepage Journal

    Crackpot theories can be discussed elsewhere; please limit the discussion to the science here.

  • Imposter! (Score:5, Funny)

    by cpt kangarooski (3773) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:18PM (#24727231) Homepage

    Crackpot theories can be discussed elsewhere; please limit the discussion to the science here.

    What site is this, and what has it done with Slashdot

  • by neoform (551705) <djneoform@gmail.com> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:19PM (#24727239) Homepage

    Zombies obviously did it.

  • Erm... (Score:5, Funny)

    by jez9999 (618189) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:25PM (#24727287) Homepage Journal

    Crackpot theories can be discussed elsewhere; please limit the discussion to the science here.

    You must be new here.

  • Unpossible! (Score:5, Funny)

    by mrbah (844007) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:31PM (#24727339)
    Do they mean to say that a fire can cause a building to collapse? Next they'll be telling us damage to structures following earthquakes isn't manmade.
  • by fotoguzzi (230256) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:31PM (#24727349)
    but you can still publish goatse links here.
  • by David Gerard (12369) <slashdotNO@SPAMdavidgerard.co.uk> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @01:52PM (#24727545) Homepage

    First read as "NIST Releases Report On Windows 7 Collapse."

  • by PrimeWaveZ (513534) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @02:00PM (#24727609)

    Asking Slashdot readers to stick to science, refrain from discussing conspiracies, AND taking the fun out of a beowulf cluster reference?

    This submitter is a black belt troll and you all know it!

  • by substance2003 (665358) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @02:03PM (#24727643)
    Slashdot has always been about freedom albeit in the open source world, this has always included debates on what people read and think. How can anyone on this web site stand there and demand to limit to science as if the fact that the only steel buildings in existence to ever fall from fire all did so on 9/11 (which includes WTC Building 7). This is a fact that goes against the science given which has always fueled conspiry theorists and with good reason. We live in a society that is given the freedom to discuss and this forum has until today always given it's user's the right to says anything that is on their minds. Is slashdot changing it's stance?
    History was not written only once, it was written and rewritten countless times over long periods of time and came to exist as we know it because discussions continue over time and corrections and rewrites and new information that was ignored or suppressed comes out.
    But this only happens because people don't just stand there and accept blindly what is told to them especially when it goes against commen sense.
    I hope the person who wrote this has the curtosy to remove the comment or correct it.
    • by nasor (690345) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:31PM (#24728571)

      How can anyone on this web site stand there and demand to limit to science as if the fact that the only steel buildings in existence to ever fall from fire all did so on 9/11 (which includes WTC Building 7).

      This is absolutely false. There are many examples of other steel buildings that collapsed due to fire before 9/11. One example off the top of my head would be the Sight and Sound Theater fire of 1997. http://www.firefightersonline.com/opsandtactics/tr-097/ [firefightersonline.com] Just google around for a few minutes if you want many more examples.

      The way 9/11 conspiracy theorists mindlessly repeat these lies (like the lie that no other steel buildings have collapsed due to fire) without bothering to spend even five minutes googling around with terms like "steel building fire collapse" is a testimony to their extreme gullibility and intellectual laziness. It's not different than the oft-repeated claim that the fire wasn't hot enough to melt steel, which ignores the fact that steel loses much of its strength well before it actually melts.

  • by rfc1394 (155777) <Paul@paul-robinson.us> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @02:42PM (#24728027) Homepage Journal
    As I write on my blog [paul-robinson.us], there's a big group of - for lack of a better name - crackpots who go around claiming the Bush (Jr.) Administration had something to do with the 9/11 events or in the destruction of the two towers. Which is ridiculous for the simple reason I point out: "the (current) Bush Administration doesn't have people smart enough to pull a stunt like that. The current administration's staffing policies have been directed toward political cronyism and connections, even at the expense of even bare competence. From what I've seen, anyone working there that has any self respect or common sense has quit." It's pointless to argue that they have the kind of people smart enough to pull off this sort of thing and keep it secret. If they were that good, they'd have been able to cover up the whole fake "weapons of mass destruction" issue in order to make it look like they really were present in Iraq.
    • by cicho (45472) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @04:00PM (#24728893) Homepage

      You are making a mistake by conflating a lot of people, with lots of different opinions, into a single entity. They are not. And the issue of what physical forces caused the buildings to fall as they did is orthogonal to the question of who caused it to happen that way.

      You go on to say
      "the (current) Bush Administration doesn't have people smart enough to pull a stunt like that"

      I don't know about that. They Bush administration got exactly what they wanted in Afghanistan and Iraq, they got exactly what they wanted with the Patriot Act, the FISA bill, wiretapping, no-fly lists, they got exactly what they wanted on things like the bankruptcy bill, now they even got Poland and the Czech Republic to agree to the missile shield, even though it doesn't even work and in both countries the majority of the population are opposed to the project. In fact, Bush and his people have been getting pretty much what they wanted throughout the term, often with a little help from the Democrats (including the confirmation of all the far right nominations to the Supreme Court and elsewhere).

      If you consistently get what you want for 7 years, that's not exactly incompetence.

  • truthers == IDers (Score:4, Interesting)

    by opencity (582224) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @02:43PM (#24728033) Homepage

    Arguing with truthers is like arguing with creationists. They've already decided, it's a matter of faith. The weird thing is having looked at the structural collapse of the towers, if the official version was controlled demolition and the conspiracy theory was burning jet fuel, from a straight scientific standpoint I'd be inclined to believe the conspiracy. Physically, building catches fire, steel expands, breaks seals makes a lot more sense then Rutger Hauer and why not Whoopy spend a few days planting charges. However, like IDers, truthers decided they can make up various physical laws and ignore others as they go along all the while shouting "science!" (cue: T Dolby). And they get continuously pumped up by right wing trolls who figure quite accurately that they make the left look like a bunch of hairy clowns shouting 'JET FUEL BURNS AT 800 DEGREES MAN' at a fireman's funeral.

    The real cover up is that the buildings weren't code to begin with, or rather David Rockefeller etc bent building codes to get them built. And Rudy had all the fuel stored in 7 against the advice of all the professionals. And that the Saucer People, in league with the Bush Administration, used a gravity ray to make the buildings fall faster then gravity and straight down.

    Actually if you work some UFOs in I'll sign up. How cool would that be?

    • Re:truthers == IDers (Score:5, Interesting)

      by amorsen (7485) <benny+slashdot@amorsen.dk> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:18PM (#24728411)

      The real cover up is that the buildings weren't code to begin with, or rather David Rockefeller etc bent building codes to get them built.

      Indeed. The person involved in 9/11 that I'd prefer most to see behind bars is the one who approved the choice of plaster for walls of the staircases. Whoever he is, he has at least hundreds of lives on his conscience.

  • by arthurpaliden (939626) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:03PM (#24728221)

    Insecure people need conspiracy theories, they need to make what happened more complicated and devious that it really was. Because if what happened really was this easy;

    Prior to 9/11 several people from a third world countries entered the US legally and took flight lessons and then booked flights. Then on 9/11 they legally boarded the aircraft and once the aircraft were airborne took over aircraft, that basically fly themselves, and then pointed them at buildings.

    They could never sleep at night and it would make people from the third world smarter that they are.

  • by LS (57954) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:05PM (#24728265) Homepage

    First, I need to say a few things to inoculate myself from being labeled one way or the other:

    1. The concept of a "conspiracy theory" is flawed, and is simply a cop out. There is no such thing as a conspiracy theory. There are just good and bad theories. Labeling an idea a "conspiracy theory" is just a form of jingoism and does nothing to increase the flow of ideas. Labeling something a conspiracy theory is a brilliant tactic to bury an idea as it takes advantage of herd mentality. Judge an idea by its merit and not by its label. Here on Slashdot extremely brilliant and extremely stupid ideas are posited all the time, so why now are we disallowed to discus a certain set of ideas? I thought there was a strong freedom/libertarian mindset here...

    2. If you examine history, conspiracies are actually the norm and not an aberration. Look at Rome, or the times of Shakespeare, or Nazi Germany, or the French revolution, etc etc. Look at the behavior of the current administration of the United States and say there haven't been conspiratory behaviors with a straight face. All a conspiracy means is that more than one person plans together to do something secretly. That happens ALL THE TIME, whether criminally or not.

    3. As Slashdot readers many of you consider yourselves to be scientifically minded and aware of logical fallacies. Why does this mindset breakdown when it comes to politically charged events? You are labeling people nut cases and tinfoil hat wearers and conspiracy theorists the same way people were labeled communists during the McCarthy era. The ad hominem attacks are relentless.

    4. In light of the awareness that several agencies in the US with billions of dollars in funding and specific programs for controlling the flow of information DO exist, wouldn't you think that Slashdot, a hub of meme flow on the internet, would be a specific target of operations? Opinions are manipulated on the net regularly. You only have to look at China with their "wangyou" (internet friends) that are paid 50 cents chinese for each message they post that supports a certain agenda. The manipulation in the US is much more subtle. Teams of PhDs and psychologists know what buttons to press to get a certain response out of a self-admittedly obsessive compulsive crowd of nerds.

    5. Building 7 was never hit by an airplane. The owner of the building admitted to it being demolished, then reneged his statement. There are videos of reporters describing building 7's fall while it is still standing in the background. It took SEVEN years for investigators to come up with a reason for the building to fall the way it did. Is it possible that the SEVEN years were spent honing a story plausible enough to convince even the most skeptical people of it's truth?

    6. Unless you've visited the site of the building and done your own scientific measurements, everything you know comes from suspect media sources. This relates to point 3 above. I freely admit I don't know the truth of what happened due to this single fact.

    In summary: Don't buy into either side of the story. There are plausible explanations for it being due to fire, but there are equally plausible explanations to it being due to malicious intent. Don't follow the herd - a certain subset of humans are purely pragmatic and will do whatever it takes to gain money or power.

    PLEASE PLEASE refer to the last 5000 years of history and don't make the mistake of thinking that somehow right now things are different and innocent.

    LS

    • by digitrev (989335) <digitrev@hotmail.com> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:47PM (#24728755) Homepage

      1. The concept of a "conspiracy theory" is flawed, and is simply a cop out. There is no such thing as a conspiracy theory. There are just good and bad theories. Labeling an idea a "conspiracy theory" is just a form of jingoism and does nothing to increase the flow of ideas. Labeling something a conspiracy theory is a brilliant tactic to bury an idea as it takes advantage of herd mentality. Judge an idea by its merit and not by its label. Here on Slashdot extremely brilliant and extremely stupid ideas are posited all the time, so why now are we disallowed to discus a certain set of ideas? I thought there was a strong freedom/libertarian mindset here...

      A conspiracy theory is a theory that relies on the existence of a conspiracy to keep it quiet. Most of these tend to be bad, as most people realize how difficult it is to keep quiet about things on a large scale. Look at your friends. The more people that are in on something, the more likely it is to get out. As for judging an idea by its merit, fair enough. In my opinion, this idea has no merit. And no one's forbidding you from discussing certain ideas, the editor was just asking people not to bring it up. A perfectly reasonable request, seeing as how a lot of the people who come here are interested in science.

      2. If you examine history, conspiracies are actually the norm and not an aberration. Look at Rome, or the times of Shakespeare, or Nazi Germany, or the French revolution, etc etc. Look at the behavior of the current administration of the United States and say there haven't been conspiratory behaviors with a straight face. All a conspiracy means is that more than one person plans together to do something secretly. That happens ALL THE TIME, whether criminally or not.

      Yep. However, most of those conspiracies were found out. It's incredibly hard to keep a conspiracy quiet for any amount of time. These conspiracies usually fall apart as soon as they've enacted their plans. People are incompetent.

      3. As Slashdot readers many of you consider yourselves to be scientifically minded and aware of logical fallacies. Why does this mindset breakdown when it comes to politically charged events? You are labeling people nut cases and tinfoil hat wearers and conspiracy theorists the same way people were labeled communists during the McCarthy era. The ad hominem attacks are relentless.

      Except that we aren't throwing them in jail. Just mocking them.

      4. In light of the awareness that several agencies in the US with billions of dollars in funding and specific programs for controlling the flow of information DO exist, wouldn't you think that Slashdot, a hub of meme flow on the internet, would be a specific target of operations? Opinions are manipulated on the net regularly. You only have to look at China with their "wangyou" (internet friends) that are paid 50 cents chinese for each message they post that supports a certain agenda. The manipulation in the US is much more subtle. Teams of PhDs and psychologists know what buttons to press to get a certain response out of a self-admittedly obsessive compulsive crowd of nerds.

      And not one of these people would gladly go to the press to guarantee their name going down in history as the one who blew the lid off the conspiracy? Or wait, the media is in on it too! See the problem with suggesting conspiracies? Either everyone is in on it, or the people in on it at are the best liars and deceivers known to mankind.

      5. Building 7 was never hit by an airplane. The owner of the building admitted to it being demolished, then reneged his statement. There are videos of reporters describing building 7's fall while it is still standing in the background. It took SEVEN years for investigators to come up with a reason for the building to fall the way it did. Is it possible that the SEVEN years were spent honing a story plausible enough to convin

    • by illegalcortex (1007791) on Sunday August 24, 2008 @03:49PM (#24728779)

      everything you know comes from suspect media sources

      And this is the crux of why it's labeled a "conspiracy theory." Because the people who are clinging to it so desperately so frequently dismiss evidence that disagrees by claiming it's part of a cover-up. You can come up with an explanation for just about everything that involves a conspiracy followed by a coverup.

      Every single person who has ever been murdered at random (whether by someone mentally ill or as part of a robbery) could really have been murdered as part of a planned conspiracy. That doesn't mean there has never been a conspiracy to murder any particular individual. But without solid and conclusive evidence of the conspiracy itself, it's all mental masturbation. And by solid and conclusive evidence, I don't mean evidence that can be interpreted two ways an only fits if you come to it pre-supposing a conspiracy.

  • by scourfish (573542) <scourfish@yaho o . c om> on Sunday August 24, 2008 @06:06PM (#24730169)
    If you Buy Fraggle Rock, Season 2 on DVD and watch episode 36, titled "The Doozer Contest," you will find, about 3 and a half minutes in, Flange saying "Look the Fraggles are Destroying the North Tower" and then all of the Doozers Cheer. If you don't believe that this is proof positive that Jim Henson was behind the events of September 11th, then you are a disinformation agent and a muppet of the shadow government.

If A = B and B = C, then A = C, except where void or prohibited by law. -- Roy Santoro

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