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# The CD theory of the 9/11 WTC 7 collapse is more scientific than the official NIST fire theory

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after 3 votes the winner is...
RoyLatham
 Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point Started: 2/23/2012 Category: Science Updated: 6 years ago Status: Post Voting Period Viewed: 4,142 times Debate No: 21427
Debate Rounds (3)

28 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 11 through 20 records.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
I didn't spend as much time on the conservation of energy argument as other arguments because it is so obviously wrong. All one needs to know is that buildings taken down by explosives use a negligible amount of energy in the explosive compared to the energy in the building. A few hundred pounds of explosives collapse take down a building having ten thousand times as much energy in the building Therefore whether there are explosives or not makes no difference to the rate of fall.

In the case WTC 7, the building energy was equivalent to 2500 tons of TNT. If controlled demolition technique were used, maybe 500 pounds of shaped charge would be needed. The explosie energy is negligible. If thermite were used a great deal more energy would be required, but that energy would go into melting the steel, not in accelerating the fall of the building.

Once a beam is separated by a fine crack, all ability of the steel to support the structure is lost. When building starts falling, the steel cracks. The energy to make the steel crack is tiny compared to the energy of the falling building.

Consider the energy balance in an avalanche. Hundreds of tons of snow are sitting with potential energy. Some small amount of energy sets off the fall. The snow then falls with whatever speed it wants to.

Conspiracy theorists interpret the data to show free fall speeds when in fact the speeds are slightly slower. The WTC towers took about 15 seconds and 20 seconds to fall, respectively, but conspiracy theorist claim 9 seconds, the free fall rate. In the WTC 7 case, the overall building fall is acknowledged to be less than free fall, so they focus on the lower floors after the enormous momentum of the fall has gathered so the energy to break the structure at that point is too small to measure.

The way conspiracy theorists deal with impossibilities is to ignore them. The secrecy, molten metal, and metal that stays melted without heat are all ignored.
Posted by FourTrouble 6 years ago
@Roy, the debate was complicated but I did my best to follow it. I see what you are saying about the conservation of energy, I didn't connect your arguments to it while reading, that may have been my failure, not yours.

@MichaelF, are you really gonna tell me that "the theory Con supports does not explain any of the observables"?? That statement alone calls your ability to make sound conclusions into question. I think you still don't understand the distinction between scientific theory and engineering analysis. Explaining what happened to the WTC 7 is not science, it's engineering. It requires a different kind of theory, which has nothing to do with preferring the simpler explanation to the more complex one. The explanation we choose is the most believable one. Con claims the CD conspiracy theory would require the cover-up of 200+ scientists and engineers. I personally found that very hard to believe. You can say I commit the incredulity logical fallacy too, it doesn't matter. The point is, Con convinced me. You did not show me that the cover-up was MORE believable. So I give arguments to Con -- the best explanation is the most believable one, regardless of whatever logical fallacies you throw at me or Con.
Posted by MichaelF 6 years ago
FourTrouble, I did not insist on simplicity. If you read my points on this, simplicity is a deciding factor when you have two theories that best explain observables. Since the theory Con supports does not explain any of the observables and the CD theory explains all the observables, the simplicity factor is completely irrelevant. Simplicity is not a deciding factor. This point merely served to muddy the waters.

You claim Con convincing claimed that conspiracy theories defy logic. But he did that by committing to the appeal to incredulity logical fallacy. He supports the claim that conspiracy theories defy logic with illogic!

Con left the conservation of energy to the last because he knows I would have demolished him on it. Con did not scientifically contest my point on that, he merely made more unsupported pronouncements that it did not violate the first law of thermodynamics. He does not explain how supports that held up a building for all those years offered no resistance at all. Because he can't. NIST can't. No one can because it is impossible. If it was possible someone would have made a computer model or some other experiment showing it is possible. They haven't because they cannot.
Posted by RoyLatham 6 years ago
FourTrouble, This was a complicated debate. The conservation of energy argument is that free fall speeds are impossible because energy must go into breaking the building, reducing e energy available for falling. The counter argument is that the energy going into the breaking the building is too small to affect the speed of fall substantially. I argued that repeatedly, relying on the evidence that all collapsing buildings fall at about the same speeds. I guess I should have pointed out explicitly that was the counter to the conservation of energy contention.

A Prof. Green calculated the potential energy in WTC 7 as equivalent to 2500 tons of TNT. That energy is released by a collapse. In real controlled demolitions using explosives a few hundred pound of explosives are used to bring down the building. The energy from the explosives is negligible.

conspiracy theories of every type depend upon a long list of things at appear to need explanation. In a debate with a character limit, it's difficult to know when something on the list has been adequately treated and it's better to talk about something else. In a debate with scientific issue, te science has to be explained as well.
Posted by larztheloser 6 years ago
Just read through the debate ... and I'm exhausted! Will vote on this tomorrow, when my mind's not dead.
Posted by FourTrouble 6 years ago
Theoretical simplicity refers to the basic principles a scientific theory is based on. The simplest and least number of laws that can explain the most complex phenomena is considered the best scientific theory. Con clearly distinguishes scientific theory from an "engineering analysis." The CD and NIST are explanations for a specific event, not scientific theories. Of course, both Pro and Con agreed that any engineering analysis is bound by scientific theory, but operating within the laws of science does not make something itself scientific law or theory. That difference justified Con's case for complexity, and showed the error of Pro's insistence on simplicity. Con convincingly argued that conspiracy theories defy logic, especially the cover-up of 200+ scientists. It's difficult to believe that many scientists would say nothing. Pro did make some good arguments that NIST did not match scientific laws. That said, Con did a good job of showing that CD also did not correspond to scientific theory. I was waiting since Round 1 for Con to contest Pro's argument about the conservation of energy. The laws of thermodynamics are big ones, and had Con left that uncontested, the debate would have been tied. Con finally does that in the last Round, which gives Con arguments. I gave Pro conduct, because Con waits until the last Round to address what should have been done in Round 1.
Posted by FourTrouble 6 years ago
Good debate.
Posted by Zealous1 6 years ago
@Larz: Yeah lol.

He'll have fun with Roy I'm sure :P
Posted by larztheloser 6 years ago
Looking for a phd when all you have is a bachelor's degree ... pro sounds very confident of his abilities.
Posted by airmax1227 6 years ago
3 day voting periods are practically a DDO faux pas for serious debates. It does not facilitate fair voting as it lowers the chances for a greater number of votes, and decreases the opportunities for voters who read debates thoroughly before voting, to vote. The votes of the latter are often what maintains the integrity of the voting system altogether.
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