Sunday, April 19, 2009

Get the Evidence to Fit the Conclusion

I noticed this earlier while reading Henry62s article in the previous post. In Jones' et al supermagiconanothermite paper, they discover the presence of sulfur, which apparently isn't in their current brand of supermagiconanothermite, so they dismiss it as contamination from the gypsum wallboard:

Prior to soaking the chip in MEK an XEDS spectrum was acquired from an area of the red-layer surface. The resulting spectrum, shown in Fig. (14), produced the expected peaks for Fe, Si, Al, O, and C. Other peaks included calcium, sulfur, zinc, chromium and potassium. The occurrence of these elements could be attributed to surface contamination due to the fact that the analysis was performed on the as-collected surface of the red layer. The large Ca and S peaks may be due to contamination with gypsum from the pulverized wallboard material in the buildings.

This reminded me of the fact that earlier they had been arguing that the presence of sulfur was proof of thermate. And sure enough, if you go back to Jones' original paper, the presence of sulfur is the smoking gun, and he dismisses the wallboard as the source.

Finally, sulfidation was observed in structural steel samples found from both WTC7 and one of the WTC Towers, as reported in Appendix C in the FEMA report. It is quite possible that more than one type of cutter-charge was involved on 9/11, e.g., HMX, RDX and thermite analogs in some combination. While gypsum in the buildings is a source of sulfur, it is highly unlikely that this sulfur could find its way into the structural steel in such a way as to form a eutectic or to cause sulfidation; experiments are always encouraged to test such ideas. The evidence for the use of some variant of thermite such as sulfur-containing thermate in the destruction of the WTC Towers and building 7 is sufficiently compelling to warrant serious investigation.

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