How terrorist attacks are being studied to make buildings safer – video

July 15, 2015

Devastating terrorist attacks which cause structures to collapse are helping researchers come up with safer building plans. The 11 September 2001 attacks on the World Trade Centre, as well as the Oklahoma City bombing in 1995, are just two which have been studied at the University of New South Wales to help researchers in their quest for more stable structures.

Catastrophic Science is a series produced by the University of New South Wales

The Third Tower: Mystery Unsolved booklet PDF

This sets out crucial questions of science, engineering and forensic evidence which the BBC programme failed to address.

The programme cleverly glossed over awkward questions, so that its audience could retire to bed reassured that 'there's nothing to see here'.

In my view, the programme is a prime example of the Big Lie in operation.

This booklet is all my own work. I am not an engineer or a physicist. I would appreciate any expert advice on improving it.

I have also made available some more Free Bees CD inserts. A design inspired by the Pink Floyd element in the song, plus an insert for sending CDs to DJs.

Usual URL:

The server is showing healthy activity. Thank you to all of you for using what I offer.

Someone to Watch Over Them

Congress now requires "peer review' of Corps of Engineers decisions,
but it does not require the Corps to heed the reviews" or the reviewers.

By David Winkler-Schmit

'They (the Corps) do have to do peer review under the law," says Garrett Graves, director of the Governor's Office of Coastal Affairs. "But there's nothing under the current plan that would prohibit them from doing a peer review, having the peer review come back and find major flaws, and the Corps simply ignoring [the review's findings]. There's no binding attribution to the peer review."

Full Story: (click here)

It has been suggested that Boehlert's task force might conclude that ASCE should no longer probe national disasters. The society also looked into the 9/11 collapse of the World Trade Center. If Boehlert's task force reaches that conclusion, it gives rise to other questions: Who should review the work of investigators? And, of more local significance, will the Corps ever be made to listen?

Engineer Society Accused of Cover-Ups

By CAIN BURDEAU – 45 minutes ago

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The professional organization for engineers who build the nation's roads, dams and bridges has been accused by fellow engineers of covering up catastrophic design flaws while investigating national disasters.

After the 2001 attack on the World Trade Center and the levee failures caused by Hurricane Katrina in 2005, the federal government paid the American Society of Civil Engineers to investigate what went wrong.

Critics now accuse the group of covering up engineering mistakes, downplaying the need to alter building standards, and using the investigations to protect engineers and government agencies from lawsuits.

...In the World Trade Center case, critics contend the engineering society wrongly concluded skyscrapers cannot withstand getting hit by airplanes. In the hurricane investigation, it was accused of suggesting that the power of the storm was as big a problem as the poorly designed levees.

...Seed accused the engineering society and the Army Corps of collusion, writing an Oct. 20 letter alleging that the two organizations worked together "to promulgate misleading studies and statements, to subvert appropriate independent investigations ... to literally attempt to change some of the critical apparent answers regarding lessons to be learned."


Abolhassan Astaneh-Asl, a structural engineer and forensics expert, contends his computer simulations disprove the society's findings that skyscrapers could not be designed to withstand the impact of a jetliner.

Astaneh-Asl, who received money from the National Science Foundation to investigate the collapse, insisted most New York skyscrapers built with traditional designs would survive such an impact and prevent the kind of fires that brought down the twin towers.

He also questioned the makeup of the society's investigation team. On the team were the wife of the trade center's structural engineer and a representative of the buildings' original design team.

"I call this moral corruption," said Astaneh-Asl, who is on the faculty at the University of California, Berkeley.


Flight 77 and the Pentagon

I wrote the following article for my own blog 11 May last year- Like most people, the whole 911 episode was so overwhelming that it took awhile for the shock to wear off, but a couple of things bothered me. Mostly I thought about the Pentagon and the fact that there was little or no mention of the passengers, no lists, no group of parents/family members of the passengers, as there are in the WTC and Pennsylvania crashes.
Another item about the plane crashes was there was seemingly no reconstruction, no report about the airplane itself as is usually the case in airliner crahses where they assemble the pieces in a warehouse somewhere. Also, it seemed to be pretty damned good flying for "student pilots".

I am new to this site, so perhaps I will find more information about those two items here.

Since my firm was in the business of staffing high-level engineering and construction professionals, we had a good idea of which firms were getting which contracts, and knew that a contract had been let for renovations to the Pentagon. It turns out that being able to hit the Pentagon where they hit the Pentagon was more than luck.

I admit to thinking that there was something unsettling about the whole American Airlines Flight 77 into the Pentagon aftermath. It appeared that there was not enough wreckage of either the 767 or the building. It made that particular aspect of the 9/11 trauma ripe for speculation as to what happened to the plane. Why wasnt there more damage to the building? Did a plane actually crash? Was it a hoax?

Mass and Velocity of 767 vs Thickness of Trade Tower Perimeter Walls.

[I just spent a long time writing an amendment to this blog. I'm at a public terminal and lost the text i worked on. I have to go not but will re-write later tonights.

The blog entry is incorrect since my calculations were wrong. I apologize for the sloppiness.

More later.]

From the Journal of Engineering Mechanics:
"Impact of the Boeing 767 Aircraft into the World Trade Center"

J. Engrg. Mech., Volume 131, Issue 10, pp. 1066-1072 (October 2005)

Here's the abstract from ASCE Research Library