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Saturday, December 1, 2012

Taylor Contra Power - Part 1: The Twin Towers

Science blogger Myles Power has recently uploaded a series of videos to YouTube documenting his interaction with several members of the 9/11 Truth Movement at Ground Zero for the 11-year anniversary.[1] He claims in these videos that he “debunks” several points made by the Movement. Here I will address his arguments and show why they fall well short of debunking the Movement’s case for the WTC being destroyed with controlled demolition.

WTC buildings built to withstand airplane strikes
The first issue Mr. Power addresses is the fact that the Towers were originally built to withstand airplane strikes. However, he disputes the specifics of this issue, arguing that the circumstances on 9/11 were far more severe than what was expected by the original designers. Specifically, he claims that the Chief WTC engineer Leslie Robertson only designed the Towers to take the impact from a Boeing 707, which would be flying at only 180 mph, and low on fuel. Since the planes that hit the Towers were Boeing 767s, travelling much faster and contained more fuel, he argues it’s not surprising the Towers collapsed. But his points are all shown to be either false or misleading.
1.      Leslie Robertson, the Chief WTC engineer. It first needs to be pointed out that Leslie Robertson was not the head engineer for the Towers. John Skilling was clearly the lead engineer on the project, while Robertson was his subordinate.[2]

2.      Speed of the aircraft. That being the case, records show that calculations carried out by John Skilling and his team indicated that the Towers were actually built to withstand the impact of a 707 flying at its cruising speed of 600 mph.[3] The planes that hit the Towers were only travelling at approximately 440 and 540 mph, respectively.[4]

3.      Fuel load. Furthermore, John Skilling indicated that he anticipated the fuel load for a plane that might crash into the buildings, saying that:
We looked at every possible thing we could think of that could happen to the buildings, even to the extent of an airplane hitting the side… Our analysis indicated the biggest problem would be the fact that all the fuel (from the airplane) would dump into the building. There would be a horrendous fire. A lot of people would be killed. [But] the building structure would still be there.[5]

And of course this makes perfect sense when one considers the circumstances. Power argues that only planes low on fuel would have been considered by the designers because they would have only anticipated planes seeking to land at an airport. But as correctly points out, “if you take into consideration planes that are landing at an airport, then you must consider planes that are taking off, and such planes are fully laden with fuel.”[6]

4.      Wingspan. Power also claims that because the wingspan of a 767 is longer than that of a 707, the planes that hit the Towers would have done more damage. However, it can be argued that the wings from a 707 would actually cause more damage than a 767’s wings. A 707 has four engines—two on each wing—compared with a 767, which only has two engines—one on each wing. The engines are without a doubt the strongest part of an airplane. Wings with two engines each rather than one each would undoubtedly cause more damage. The fact of the matter is that the planes that hit the Towers were well within the design parameters expected by the original designers.[7]

The fires at the WTC

Mr. Power then argues that the fires in the Towers would have been hot enough to heat the steel to the point of failure, causing them to collapse. He also explains that dark smoke is not an indication that the fires were cool or oxygen starved. While I agree with his points regarding the color of the smoke, there are several other features of the fires that indicates they were not particularly severe.[8] The greatest piece of evidence that the fires were not severe enough to cause collapse is the simple fact that the official investigators, NIST, have no evidence of high temperatures in the buildings in the first place.[9]

Inward bowing

From this point we get a discussion of the inward bowing seen happening in the videos of the Towers. Mr. Power parrots the explanations provided by NIST; that the fires in the buildings caused the floor trusses to sag downward, causing the exterior columns to bow inward and eventually breaking, initiating the collapse. The inward bowing of the Towers' perimeter columns has been a subject of much debate regarding the controlled demolition of the Towers. As we have already established, NIST has no evidence of high temperatures in the buildings in the first place, and this sort of phenomenon has never caused the total collapse of a steel-framed high-rise before.[10] All NIST has is evidence that the columns bowed inward, but they have no evidence that fire alone is what caused it. Though Mr. Power asserts that controlled demolition cannot cause this event either, those in the Movement have proposed ways it can be done.[11] As noted by mechanical engineer Tony Szamboti:

It is instructive that the first visible signs of failure on the North Tower are when the antenna mast moves downward by ten to twelve feet before the perimeter roof line moves. This is indicative of the central core suddenly and completely failing first. If you haven’t seen this watch it frame by frame at the link below.

These frames don’t show slow creep, they show sudden failure of the central core itself. They certainly don’t show the perimeter walls failing first. If the central core failed first it would cause the floor trusses, not to sag, but to follow them downward. In this situation the other end of the floor trusses would apply a tremendous force and bending moment to the perimeter wall columns, causing them to bow inwardly and ultimately to fail. Some of the NIST photos of WTC1, showing inwardly bowed perimeter columns, are frozen frames taken from video. In these photos the roof of the building and antenna mast are not shown. It would be interesting to see these videos, without cropping of the roofline and antenna mast, to determine if the bowing of the perimeter columns occurs after the antenna mast starts moving downward.[12]

The inward bowing of the Towers’ columns in no way disproves the notion that they were destroyed through controlled demolition.[13]

Free-fall speed

The next issue Mr. Power discusses is the fall rates of the Towers. He explains that the Towers did not collapse at free-fall rate, noting that a) the collapses took longer than 10 seconds; b) parts of the cores were still standing after the collapses; and c) the debris falling outside the footprint of each building fell faster than the actual structure.

a)      Here I actually agree with Mr. Power, as more accurate measurements indicate that the Towers collapsed in approximately 15 seconds in either case.[14] While the Towers clearly did not collapse at free-fall, this is the case for most controlled demolitions as well. It has been established that the fall times for the Towers is consistent with the fall times of other controlled demolitions, and had the buildings really collapsed through natural causes, their collapses should have taken much longer.[15]

b)      Although parts of the cores of each Tower were standing after the collapses, analyses done by mechanical engineer Gordon Ross demonstrate that the cores were attacked first in the collapses, and that critical sections of them collapsed along with the rest of the structures.[16]

c)      It’s true that the debris fell faster than the actual structure. However, close inspection of the videos show that the debris actually falls at around the same rate as the wave of ejections seen travelling down the faces of each building.[17]

Mr. Power also questions why truthers count the full height of the Towers when timing the collapses instead of counting only where the collapses started at the plane-impact areas. The reason for counting the full height of each building is rather simple. The videos show that the lower sections of the Towers do not even begin to start collapsing until the upper sections are completely destroyed.

Basement/lobby explosions

The last subject discussed in part 1 Mr. Power’s video series is one of the most debated topics of the demolition issue; the explosions reported in the basement and lobby of WTC1. My personal beliefs regarding the basement and lobby explosions are somewhat agnostic. As I have explained in another article I’ve written on this topic:

Although viewpoints differ in the 9/11 Truth movement regarding the cause of these explosions, some features of the lobby damage indicate that they were not due to a fireball explosion from the jet fuel. For example, the white marble walls show no signs of being exposed to fire, and the plants next to the blown out windows show no signs of burning either.

And at least one explosives expert has stated that he does not believe the damage was caused by the jet fuel traveling down the elevator shafts, based on the appearance of the lobby. Whether or not the lobby damage is indicative of explosives, however, is essentially irrelevant to the discussion of the Towers’ demolitions, as the collapse sequence started above the plane impact zone, not at the lower levels. The lobby damage is not necessary to prove the Twin Towers were destroyed by controlled demolition…[18]

Thermite and Nanothermite

The second video in Mr. Power's series discusses the issue of thermite and nanothermite being used to demolish the WTC buildings. Like other debunkers, Mr. Power believes not only was nanothermite not used to demolish the Towers, but that it can’t be used in a demolition anyway. We will discuss this latter point later on. For now, we’ll examine his issues regarding the study carried out by Dr. Steven Jones et al documenting that unreacted nanothermite was found in the WTC dust.[19]


For some reason, Mr. Power seems to have a problem with how much detail Dr. Jones et al discussed in their paper regarding how the dust samples were collected. He apparently finds it all unnecessary. The reason for the large amount of back-story was obviously done to ensure that they established a clear chain of custody. This makes perfect sense, and shows that these scientists were indeed practicing careful scientific research when collecting the dust. This is also why the fifth sample was not included in their study, since they could not give the original owner’s name. Had they included this sample in their study, debunkers would likely have cried foul, demanding to know who this person is. Debunkers have often criticized members of the Movement for failing to provide adequate details of their work. Now Mr. Power seems to have a problem with there being too much detail. Is there no way to make debunkers happy?

Thermite components

Mr. Power is also unimpressed with the findings of the paper due to the fact that the components of thermite are very common, and could have simply come from prosaic sources in the buildings. But other members of the Movement have explained why this argument is complete nonsense. As explained by mechanical engineer Gordon Ross:

[I]f I leave margarine, flour, sugar and fruit in a cupboard, when I next open the cupboard I will not find a fruit crumble. Some mechanism is required to convert the ingredients. Similarly, if I take these same ingredients, set them alight and throw them out the window, I still will not get my fruit crumble. The mechanism must have some order.[20]

Similarly, as Jim Hoffman explains in more technical detail:

Although these elements -- aluminum, iron, oxygen, and silicon -- were all abundant in building materials used in the Twin Towers, it is not possible that such materials milled themselves into fine powder and assembled themselves into a chemically optimized aluminothermic composite as a by-product of the destruction of the Twin Towers.[21]

Simply put, these elements did not just randomly assemble themselves into a high-tech incendiary through a building fire and collapse.


Like so many other debunkers, Mr. Power then calls into question the validity of the peer-review process the paper went through at the Bentham Open Chemical Physics Journal. In order to discredit the paper’s peer-review process, Mr. Power cites the fact that fake science papers were submitted to Bentham and were ultimately accepted for publication. He feels this is sufficient grounds to call the journal standards into question. However, this incident in no way demonstrates that Bentham does not practice sound peer-review for their journals. As explained by Erik Larson:

[It] has not [been] proven that even the single journal that has been shown to have accepted a hoax paper is a “vanity publication” where ANYONE can publish; so far a single instance of a failure to conduct a proper peer-review has been documented. Perhaps there are other incidents, and perhaps NONE of the papers published were legitimately peer-reviewed, but the experiment conducted by Scholarly Kitchen does not document that, and the authors don’t claim it does. In addition, the problem has only been documented at a SINGLE journal among the hundreds published by Bentham- as Scholarly Kitchen notes, another Bentham journal rejected the hoax paper for publication. They say this incident only proves the peer-reviewed process is applied inconsistently.[22]

Mr. Power also notes (again, like many other debunkers) that the editor at Bentham disputed the paper and quit over it since it apparently was published without her permission. However, a closer look at this incident reveals far more. The editor, Marie-Paule Pileni, claimed to have resigned because she was not told about the paper. But, she also did not present any scientific criticisms of the paper, claiming that the topic of it lied outside here area of expertise. However, this is patently untrue, as demonstrated by Dr. Niels Harrit:

Her List of Publications reveals that Professor Pileni has published hundreds of articles in the field of nanoscience and nanotechnology. She is, in fact, recognized as one of the leaders in the field. Her statement about her “major advanced research” points out that, already by 2003, she was “the 25th highest cited scientist on nanotechnology” ( Since the late 1980s, moreover, she has served as a consultant for the French Army and other military institutions. From 1990 to 1994, for example, she served as a consultant for the Societe Nationale des Poudres et Explosifs (National Society for Powders and Explosives). She could, therefore, have easily read our paper, and she surely did. But by denying that she had read it, she avoided the question that would have inevitably been put to her: “What do you think of it?”[23]

Because her claims about not being qualified to review the paper are evidently untrue, her story ultimately does not add up. It’s obvious that neither of these points diminish the validity of the journal’s peer-review process,[24] and only serve to cast doubt rather than to address the science discussed in the paper. As Dr. Steven Jones explains:

This paper was thoroughly peer-reviewed with several pages of tough comments that required of our team MONTHS of additional experiments and studies. It was the toughest peer-review I’ve ever had, including THREE papers for which I was first author in NATURE. (Please note that Prof. Harrit is first author on this paper.) We sought an established journal that would allow us a LONG paper (this paper is 25 pages long) with MANY COLOR IMAGES AND GRAPHS. Such a scientific journal is not easy to find. Page charges are common for scientific journals these days, and are typically paid by the University of the first or second author (as is the case with this paper) or by an external grant.[25]

Dr. James Millette

We then get a discussion of Dr. James Millette’s study of the WTC dust, and how his study came to opposite conclusions to Dr. Jones’ et al. Millette’s study ultimately determined the material found was likely paint from the Towers. However, a recent article posted by my colleague John-Michael Talboo shows many flaws in Millette's study, and that further research needs to be done.[26] His article quotes Dr. Jones as saying in response to Millette:

James Millette did NOT do DSC analyses at all for his report MVA9119. What a shame, really...
When Dr Farrer burned epoxy paint in the DSC, it gave a very broad thermal trace, NOT at all like the spiked exothermic DSC peak in our Fig 19. This is one of the many tests he did to check things.
Also, we checked the electrical resistivity of several paints – consistently orders of magnitude higher than that of the red material. We reported the resistivity of the red material in our paper, page 27 in the Journal. Millette did not report any electrical resistivity measurements. This measurement is rather easy to do so I was surprised when he failed to do this straightforward test. There is a lot of red material of various types in the WTC dust, so one must be careful to make sure it is the same as what we studied, and not some other material.[27]
We also note with puzzlement Mr. Power's claim that the red/grey chips are not explosive. He argues that burning similar material will cause the kind of bright flash seen in the ignitions of these chips.[28] But this is demonstrably false, as paint chips would not react this way. John-Michael notes in his article:

The original paper also reports that paint samples as well as the red chips were heated with an oxy-acetylene torch and that the paint samples "immediately reduced to fragile ashes," but "this was not the case, however, with any of the red/gray chips from the World Trade Center dust."[29]

Millette’s paper far from debunks the findings of the Active Thermitic Material paper. But even if that were the case, the evidence of demolition for the Twin Towers and Building 7 would still be substantial, as well as other non-demolition issues.[30]

Core columns again

In Mr. Power's third video in his series, he begins by discussing the placement of the explosives inside the buildings. I agree with his assertion that the explosives would not be placed all throughout the cores, since large portions of the cores remained standing after the collapses. But as we previously discussed, the core evidently was attacked by explosives in the demolition, and it was only the 24 outer core columns that were taken down in the demolition. This fact greatly contradicts the idea that the Towers were destroyed by being crushed by the upper sections. As explained by Tony Szamboti:

The fact that 50 to 60 story high portions of the central core remain standing for several seconds, in the collapses of both twin towers, does pour cold water on the crush down (pile driver) theory of Bazant and the NIST. What many don’t know is that it was only the 23 inner core columns which remained standing, and none of the significantly larger outer 24 core columns. This was brought to light by Muhammad Columbo in 2007 and enabled mechanical engineer Gordon Ross… to be the first to fully dissect just how the towers were demolished. The reality is that the 24 outer core columns and the corners of the perimeters were taken out to effect the demolitions of the twin towers.[31]

The fact of the matter is that the Towers could very well have been accessed to place explosives in them, and it could have been done secretly.[32]

Explosives surviving the plane impacts

Mr. Power briefly questions how the explosives placed in the Towers could possibly have survived the plane impacts. However, I have already written on this topic extensively and shown that—using the right kind of explosives and placing them in just the right way—they could indeed have survived the planes impacts and ensuing fires.[33]

Molten aluminum

Next, Mr. Power addresses the issue of the molten metal seen flowing out of the South Tower shortly before its collapse. Many in the Movement have cited this as direct evidence of thermite being placed in the Tower. However, Mr. Power argues that this material is actually molten aluminum, and that molten aluminum can glow bright orange, rather than just silver as others have asserted. Again, this is an issue I have already addressed extensively in my other writings. I as explained in one of my articles:

Some still may argue that the material was molten aluminum and that it was heated to high enough temperatures to get it to glow that brightly. Below is a chart showing temperature-dependent colors of metals. At about 980ºC (1800ºF), most metals begin to glow “light orange.” PM asserts throughout the book that this is how hot the fires could have been in the Towers. However, we previously noted that NIST has no evidence that the fires did reach these temperatures in the buildings. However, even if we accept that the fires did reach those temperature levels, the material still could not have been aluminum because of how long it was heated. As explained by physicist Jerry Lobdill:

The problem with concluding that the liquid flowing from the tower’s 82nd floor could have been aluminum… is that the liquid in the tower was not confined in a container so that more heat could be applied to raise the temperature of the liquid above its melting point. Instead, as soon as the metal liquefied it flowed away from the heat source under the force of gravity. Therefore, the color of the liquid flowing from the 82nd floor [indicated that it] was at approximately the melting point of the metal. And therefore, it was molten iron from steel.

Perhaps the most important reason why the material could not have been molten aluminum is that the material actually became white hot. Regardless of what kind of material was glowing, nobody has explained what would have heated it to over 2000ºF to get it to glow that brightly.

In addition, there is simply little chance the material could have been molten aluminum, based on the fact that the material glowed for as long as it did. As Dr. Jones summarizes:
[F]alling liquid aluminum, which due to low emissivity and high reflectivity appears silvery-gray in daylight conditions, after falling through air 1-2 meters, regardless of the temperature at which the poured-out aluminum left the vessel. Aluminum does incandesce (glow) like other metals, but faintly, so… falling liquid aluminum [in bright daylight] will appear silvery-gray.

While molten aluminum can be ruled out because of the reasons stated above, there is a known substance that easily could account for the observations: thermate, which is thermite with added sulfur. The thermite reaction produces temperatures in the white-hot range up to 4500°F, and the added sulfur lowers the melting point of iron significantly.[34]

Thermate debate

We then hear Mr. Power's arguments regarding controlled demolitions and how loud they are. He correctly points out that one of the reasons the Movement cites thermate and nanothermite being used is because they are quieter than normal explosives. But, he then shows a video of civil engineer Jon Cole cutting through steel with thermate, and notes that it makes a large bang. He also argues that thermate and nanothermite does not have the ability to demolish steel structures. In regards to his first point, though thermate can be loud when set off, it obviously is not as loud as the 130-140 decibels given off from regular explosives. And with nanothermite, it can indeed be formulated to be quiet as well.[35] His second point is rather odd, as he shows Jon Cole’s video, which demonstrates that thermate can be used to cut through  structural steel. And research shows that it has even been used in the demolition of large steel structures.[36] Mr. Power also makes mention of the fact that barium nitrate is a component of thermate, but none of it was found in the debris after 9/11. But this claim is somewhat misleading. Barium nitrate is only used in one very specific form of thermate known as thermate-TH3, which is the military patented form of thermate.[37] There are different varieties and formulations of thermite and thermate, so finding barium nitrate is not at all necessary. It certainly does not need to be found in nanothermite, as explained by Dr. Jones:

Thermate (sulfur plus thermite and possibly the form thermate-TH-3) was ALSO in evidence and probably intended to weaken critical steel members (e.g., residue/ material flowing with orange glow from the So. Tower just minutes before its collapse and the sulfidation of WTC steel reported in the FEMA report but ignored by NIST). Thermite incendiary without sulfur is not in evidence at the WTC to date. But sulfur is NOT needed for the function of explosive nanothermite and would not be expected to appear in the red/gray chips.[38]

Cut columns

Mr. Power next turns his attention to the cut core columns seen in some photographs of Ground Zero. Many in the Movement have cited these as evidence of the columns being cut by the explosives placed in the buildings. But Mr. Power disagrees, noting that these cuts could simply have been caused by the clean-up operations. I happen to agree with this assessment, but Gordon Ross has also examined photos of core columns in the debris, and notes that their appearance is consistent with explosives attacking them.[39] Finally Mr. Power asserts that the pieces of debris seen being ejected from the Towers was not steel sections, but rather aluminum cladding. However, videos show that indeed several multi-ton steel sections of the Towers were ejected from the buildings.[40]


[2] See: Jones v. Robertson A physicist and a structural engineer debate the controlled demolition of the World Trade Center, by Gregg Roberts, pg. 3
[3] See: City in the Sky: The Rise and Fall of the World Trade Center, by James Glanz and Eric Lipton, pg. 131
[4] Though Mr. Power says in his video that the plane speeds were 470 and 590 mph, the NIST report gives the speeds as approximately 443 and 542 mph, respectively. See: NCSTAR 1-2: Baseline Structural Performance and Aircraft Impact Damage Analysis of the World Trade Center Towers, by Fahim H. Sadek, pg. 1xxiii
[5] Quoted from: Twin Towers Engineered To Withstand Jet Collision
[7] For more information on this subject, see: Towers’ Design Parameters and FAQ #9: Were the Twin Towers Designed to Survive the Impact of the Airplanes? by AE911Truth
[9] See: Falsifiability and the NIST WTC Report: A Study in Theoretical Adequacy, by Anonymous and Dr. Frank Legge, pg. 6
[10] For example, Jim Hoffman notes that: “The idea that fires could have caused floors to sag is not unreasonable, since it has been observed in fire tests and in cases of severe fires in steel-framed buildings, such as the One Meridian Plaza fire. What is not reasonable is the degree of sagging NIST used in its computer models compared with the amounts its physical tests showed. Whereas the 35-foot floor model sagged only a few inches in the middle after two hours in a high-temperature furnace, NIST's computer model showed a sagging of 54 inches.” Quoted from: Review of ‘A New Standard For Deception: The NIST WTC Report’, by Jim Hoffman
[11] See: A Hypothetical Blasting Scenario A Plausible Theory Explaining the Controlled Demolition of the Twin Towers Using Aluminothermic Incendiaries and Explosives with Wireless Ignition Means, by Jim Hoffman
[12] Quoted from: The Sustainability of the Controlled Demolition Hypothesis for the destruction of the Twin Towers, by Tony Szamboti
[13] For more on the subject of the inward bowing issues, see: WTC Pre-Collapse Bowing Debunks 9/11 “Controlled Demolition” Theory? by John-Michael Talboo
[15] See: Collapse Time Calculations for WTC 1, by Dr. Kenneth Kuttler
[16] See: How the Towers were Demolished, by Gordon Ross
[18] Quoted from: Debunking the Real 9/11 Myths: Why Popular Mechanics Can’t Face up to Reality - Part 1, by Adam Taylor 
[19] See: Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe, by Dr. Niels Harrit et al.
[20] Quoted from: Gordon Ross is pretty sure he exists
[21] Quoted from: Thermitic Pyrotechnics in the WTC Made Simple, by Jim Hoffman
[22] Quoted from: Dr. Moffett Smears ‘Active Thermitic’ Paper by Association- Again, by Erik Larson
[23] Quoted from: Professor Pileni’s Resignation as Editor-in-Chief of the Open Chemical Physics Journal, by Dr. Niels Harrit
[24] For more information, the following video is recommended:
[25] Quoted from: What you need to know about “Peer-review”, by Dr. Steven Jones
[26] See: A 2009 Paper Claims to Have Found Explosive Material in Dust from the 9/11 Tragedy, by John-Michael Talboo and Ziggi Zugam
[27] Quoted from: Letter regarding red/gray chip analyses, by Dr. Steven Jones
[29] See reference 26
[30] See: What Does it Mean for the 9/11 Truth Movement if James R. Millette Proves Nano-thermite Wasn’t Used to Take down the WTC Towers on 9/11? by John-Michael Talboo
[32] See: Demolition Access to the WTC Towers, by Kevin Ryan
[33] See: FAQ #2: What about the planes that slammed into the Twin Towers? Wouldn’t they have disturbed the demolition devices? by Adam Taylor
[34] Quoted from: Debunking The Real 9/11 Myths: Why Popular Mechanics Can’t Face Up To Reality - Part 5: Nanothermite in the Towers, by Adam Taylor
[35] See: Magic, Mythology or Science? by Adam Taylor
[36] See: FAQ #8: What Is Nanothermite? Could It Have Been Used To Demolish The WTC Skyscrapers? by Adam Taylor
[38] Quoted from: Steven Jones and Frank Greening (and others) correspond - April-May, 2009, by Dr. Steven Jones
[40] See:


  1. Hi, author, since I am regularly screening the net as for the news in 911 conspiracies, I have just found this article. As a JREF member I am very well informed about so called "Bentham paper" of Harrit et al, and I was one of the contributors paying for its verification conducted by Dr. James Millette. I am of course well aware also of articles on Debunking the Debunkers, including the naive attempts of J.M. Talboo and Zigy Zugam to discredit Millette's study.
    As a Czech polymer chemist with a long experience in the field I can say for sure that Talboo (and others) simply does not understand well all the stuff and his desperate effort cannot change the plain Truth (:o): Dr. Millette found (among others) the exactly same kind of red/gray chips as were the chips (a) to (d) in Bentham paper (which were explicitly declared to be nanothermite). And Millette proved beyond any reasonable doubt (for any chemist or material scientist) that these chips contained KAOLINITE instead of some mystical platelet form of metallic aluminum. Hence, these chips are indeed red epoxy primer PAINT with kaolinite and hematite as pigments. No further studies can prove anything else, and the main conclusions of Bentham paper are indeed utterly wrong and ridiculous (for tens of reasons). Deal with it:o) Nanothermite theory is dead, Prof. Jones is just a cheater and Dr. Harrit is just his sad victim.
    In JREF, our attitude, hypotheses and findings have been discussed really in a great detail e.g. here:

    Cheers, Ivan Kminek PhD., Czech Academy of Sciences, Prague:o)

  2. ...and one good advice: now, there are only two guys on Debunking the Debunkers and anywhere on remaining truthers webs, who are able to understand all the necessary chemistry and material science concerning red/gray chips - and to asset all the stuff objectively and without the apparent bias and fanaticism.

    One is indeed ScootleRoyale. You should take this guy very seriously, he usually knows what he is speaking about.

    The second one is a guy nicked Poseidon, e.g. Sadly, this smart and well-educated opponent of debunkers is rather crazy as a open racist, and some of his hypotheses are even much more bizarre that the red/gray chips were nanothermite:o)

    All other opponents, including Harrit himself and Prof. Jones, are simply too weak for any serious discussion on that "matter".

    1. Hello Ivan. I am well aware of that thread on JREF and of Millette's study. I am also a contributor to the 911debunkers blog and a good friend of JM's. He and Ziggi have posted what I consider to be a decent response to Millette's study and expose many flaws in it.

      At this point I believe a third study of the dust is important. There conceivably could be more than that done in the future, but I think at least one more is needed as to give it a fair two out of three decision. But I would like to highlight that even if the Bentham paper is refuted, that still would not refute the controlled demolition hypothesis for the WTC buildings, or the many other problems with the official 9/11 narrative:

      I myself have spent six years researching 9/11, and have documented extensively why I find the official narrative false. It doesn't all rely on the Bentham paper.

      I will wait and see what Mark Basile's tests show and go from there.

      -Adam Taylor

      P.S. I hope you will try and act like a true skeptic in this discussion, as the below comment makes me think otherwise.

      "No further studies can prove anything else"

      Does that sound like science?

  3. Hi, Adam. My sentence "No further studies can prove anything else" is just expression of my personal opinion, I know that it does not sound very "scientific":o)

    There are some minor problems with Millette's study, but indeed, I see completely different problems than Talboo and Ziggi. The detailed critics of their new article would be really long and I do not intend to write it. All their objections have been already discussed on JREF in detail. Basically, these guys, looking for any tiny discrepancy and uncertainty in the available data, are desperately trying to hand-wave the main conclusion of Millette's study, which unequivocally proved KAOLINITE as a source of Si and Al signals in the chips of the kind (a) to (d).

    We basically welcome the third study planned by Mark Basile and we wonder why the necessary money (5000 bucks) are not invested by AE911Truth, since Basile is its prominent member. Instead of all the funny circus like Rethink911, this "non-profit" organization should invest collected money directly to such a real new investigation of 911, for which it has been calling for years. I think. We in JREF can even support you in this effort (hypothetically:o).

    1. Ivan, you belittle scientists that equal or surpass your own credentials - scientists that have actually studied these chips in the lab, which is something you have not done. Then you declare that no studies could support their conclusion. You have spent too much time with those morons on your beloved JREF forum, and I hope you can start to realize how much this has affected you.

      We both know that you and your buddies avoid discussing the essay I and Talboo wrote because you do not want to bring attention to it.

      The thing you guys fear the most is that I and Talboo are most likely right about Millette not studying the same chips as Harrit et al, which downgrades Millette´s prelim report from a serious study to unpublishable rubbish - which is almost certainly the reason why Millette has not attempted to publish 16 months later.

      Basile knows how to choose the right chips, and he is including FTIR for the correct red/gray chips. The FTIR alone could absolve Millette of having chosen the wrong chips, or it could prove that Millette has the wrong chips.

      Do you think Basile will confirm Millette´s FTIR? If you do, donate some $$ for the study, and ask your JREF buddies to do the same.

      Let´s allow science to settle this debate. You know that Basile is having an independent lab repeating all his tests "blind", so there can be no accusations of bias, misconduct or anything of that sort.

      - Ziggi

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  5. Sorry, only a part of my post was published, so once again:

    Hi, Ziggi,
    this is perhaps not the best place for any detailed debate, but anyway…
    Your suggestion that we in JREF should contribute money for the new study organized by Mark Basile is funny. Although we are awaiting such a study, this should be definitely financed by AE91Truth!

    As for FTIR spectra you mentioned, we really do not know whether Basile will confirm Millette´s FTIR; it depends on what kind of red paint would be his chips (epoxy, alkyd, whatever). But, supposed that the measured chips would be the same as the Bentham chips (a) to (d) (and the most of Millette’s chips), FTIR should show epoxy resin.

    Btw, in your article written with J.M. Talboo, there is a strange mismatch/misunderstanding as regards the FTIR. You wrote: „Millette compares his chips to an epoxy spectrum that does not represent an aromatic epoxy.“ This is wrong. As we already discussed in Oystein’s blog, Millette’s epoxy resin chosen for comparison of spectra is indeed aromatic as well as binder in Laclede primer (since both binders contained Bisphenol A, which is aromatic compound), but Millette’s reference resin was probably cured by anhydride (not by amine), judging from the characteristic strong carbonyl band. Some band corresponding to carbonyl is apparent also in the spectrum of Millette’s red/gray chip, but this can be easily explained by the fact that all epoxy resins are oxidized in the course of time, which always leads to the formation of carbonyl-containing moieties. Otherwise, all characteristic bands for epoxy resin are present in both samples.

    Btw, your sentences about Ryan’s FTIR spectra are typical example of your wishfull thinking. Ryan himself wrote that this chip was “multicolored interconnected network; it had dark bands and light white coating”; therefore there is a ZERO reason to think that this chip has anything common with the typical red/gray chips of the kind (a) to (d) (declared to be nanothermite). After some analysis of this miserable spectrum it is quite apparent that this FTIR does not correspond to epoxy resin, but it does not correspond to Viton as well.
    Here is a repost of my relevant contribution in JREF:

    „We do not know what this multicolored chip was, but Viton A was not its binder.

    Since Ryan's spectra are of extremely bad quality, here are data we can know/read:

    - From the original Gash’s paper, Viton A has those clear strong vibrational bands:
    883 cm-1
    1205 cm-1
    1398 cm-1.

    - After bothering myself with some reading of Ryan's "FTIR spectrum" of multicolored WTC chip, I register bands with those approximate wavenumbers (approximate owing to miserable quality of the spectrum):
    870 cm-1 (strong)
    1100 cm-1 (strong)
    1360 cm-1 (strong)
    1570 cm-1 (weak)
    1650 cm-1 (weak)

    Conclusion: FTIR spectrum of Ryan's WTC chip is not consistent with Viton A

    Remark No 1: Ryan's spectrum is not consistent also with the spectrum of e.g. Teflon, which has two characteristic strong bands at 1200 and 1146 cm-1.

    Remark No 2: Vitons are elastomers, Jtl. They are rubbery polymers, not "hard" in any respect, as your "suspicious" WTC chips. They are usually attacked/dissolved by e.g. acetone or MEK. Try to remember it. Deal with it.“

    Similarly, I could (hypothetically) show you why your article is wrong/misleading in basically everything (sentence by sentence), but it could cost me several days and it would be anyway a loss of time. Here, I cordially agree with you that the real new study of the red/gray chips would be much, much better. So, do not be so shy and ask Dick Gage for the necessary money!

  6. Kminek, don´t worry about ae911 funding, Cage has already offered the $$ but Basile wants to try to get the $$ independently. I presume that if that fails, he will seek help from ae911.

    This is not JREF, so forget about silly JREF tactics like "I could debunk your essay word for word but I am too lazy". The simple fact is that you do not want to advertize the essay because it exposes the dirty slander and non-sense that JREF "debunkers" have relied on, including Sunstealer´s BS, and of course the Millette´s sloppy paper that never was and never will be.

    By the way, that "confusion" you refer to regarding Millette´s FTIR is entirely based on your own comments at Oystein´s blog - you are the source. If you want to correct yourself you are free to send me or Talboo an email to clarify, and since Adam is working on the updated PDF version of the paper we could include your comments in version 1.3

    - Z

  7. And Kminek, please note again that this is NOT JREF and that I am being sincere when I ask you to consider what kind of influence that forum has had on you.

    You say, "But, supposed that the measured chips would be the same as the Bentham chips... FTIR should show epoxy resin."

    You have completely reversed the scientific method. We get the FTIR of the chips to help determine if they are paint or something else, but you basically imply that the FTIR cannot represent the Bentham chips if it does not spell out "paint"!

    Basile has identified chips that ignite and convert iron-oxide into molten iron, just like Harrit. They already know how the FTIR looks like because Harrit et al already have an FTIR report, even though it did not get published. But Basile is also getting FTIR data and he WILL publish it.

    So my dear Kminek, Basile´s paper will have FTIR data that either proves that Millette has the same chips, or it proves the opposite.

    IF Basile does not have the same FTIR as Millette, then at minimum Millette´s report is bunk.

    You would still be free to argue about Basile´s FTIR, it looks like paint or something else, but Millette´s paper would still be debunked.

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  9. Ziggi:
    As for comparison of FTIR of Jim Millette, why should I correct myself? I did not write that Millette reference epoxy was not aromatic, you just misunderstood/misread my posts. It is up to you if you correct yourself in the essay.

    As for "reversed scientific method": we (all) know for sure that at least two kinds of red/gray chips found in the dust simply MUST be particles of two WTC red primers (on rust flakes): "Laclede" and "Tnemec". Specification of both paints is available. Laclede paint contained kaolinite, iron oxide and epoxy binder as the main components, and in the ratio which match XEDS of Bentham chips (a) to (d). All analyses of the source Si and Al signals, performed Millette (as well as micrographs and XEDS of Harrit et al), proved KAOLINITE, and those particles have a very typical morphology of kaolinite. Therefore, these red/gray chips are Laclede paint (or some similar primer paint in some cases). But, some other red/gray chips still must be Tnemec primer particles and they must have different FTIR, since they contained alkyd-based binder and different pigments. Therefore, the duty of any researcher is firstly to look if the found chips are those two abundant WTC paints and, if there is no good match, whether they can be anything else. This is btw something which was not done by Bentham team: they simply "identified" all found/reported red/gray chips as nanothermite. So, who is using the wrong/reversed scientific approach here?

    As for the funding of Basile's study, I am really glad that Gage is willing to pay for it. I just have some slight doubts that Mark Basile is the ideal person for evaluating the results. Since I e.g. remember that this guy found mere ca 2 % od Fe and Al in his chip "Lucky Thirteen" and he still stubbornly claims that this chip was a kind of thermite. He is a chemist, so he really should know that (using even a plain common sense) in such a material, the contribution of alleged thermitic reaction betwwen Al and iron oxide to the overall thermal effect must be inevitably negligible, when the organic stuffs prevail in the red layer.

    1. Oh for crying out loud Kminek, there is no JREF audience here so drop the act.

      Our discussion at Oystein´s blog is pretty clear and anyone can follow the links provided in the Zugam/Talboo essay. 2 sources confirmed that Millette´s prominent peak at 1700 spells out a non-aromatic compound. You just praised Poseidon here as "smart and well educated", and he also confirmed this problem with Millette´s FTIR. You had no objections then and did not refute this info. Anyone can follow those links and check out for themselves - I am not going to argue with you here.

    2. And again Kminek, just quit the JREF tactics and leave them for good. Your ad-h attack on Basile is really sad and desperate, and anyone can see. Shame on you.

      You reverse the scientific method when you decide before getting the data that the FTIR MUST match one of your 2 paint choices. And you do it in a BIG WAY when you declare that no data could confirm Harrit´s conclusion. You have predetermined what the "correct" conclusion is; the evidence be damned.

      You are WAY above this kind of BS, but your years at JREF have blinded you and made you numb.

      So wake up pal. Really.

      You know fully well that both Harrit and Millette have ruled out Tnemec. Your JREF theory is that both have LaClede paint, and therefore you assume that Millette´s FTIR demonstrates LaClede.

      After all the JREF poo-pooing about Harrit hiding the FTIR, it is both funny and informative to see the panicked JREF silence to the news that Basile is about to release the FTIR for the correct active chips.

      Like we say in our essay, Millette has avoided the ignition tests and the publishing of the prelim report for a good reason.

      Go back to your roots as a scientist, embrace the data and let the chips fall where they may. Basile is a true professional and he is including additional data from "blind testing" by an independent lab.

  10. Ziggi:
    The last remark about for Millette's FTIR:
    In Oystein's blog, Poseidon wrote (3.6.2012,

    "It looks like Millette used a reference FTIR for the "wrong" epoxy. The strong signal from 1731 cm-1 is associated with amides (and ketones, aldehydes, carboxylic acid, esters). It's described as "very strong" in the range 1680 - 1820.

    Laclede primer used epoxy amines, not amides, as the "vehicle". Some epoxies use amines; others use amides, e.g. if there is a problem with moisture.

    But Millette didn't know about Laclede primer, or which type of epoxy he should have used for his reference."

    And I replied: "Poseidon: here you can be right and perhaps Jim Millette really chose epoxy coating not cured with amines, since in such epoxy resins, no strong band corresponding to carbonyls at ca 1670-1760 cm-1 should occur." Etc.

    You see, there is nothing about aromatic compounds, the talk was about the curing agents of epoxy resins and chemical groups formed during curing. And, Poseidon's note was correct and well-informed: if there is a prominent band about 1700 cm-1 in FTIR, it indicates that cured epoxy contained groups with carbonyl moieties (amides, ketones, aldehydes, carboxylic acid, esters), and hence it it was not cured with amine, but with amides, anhydrides or similar. (In the case of amine hardener, no carbonyls are formed, just tertiary amine groups.) But, such "discovery" requires some education in organic chemistry, which you simply lack (contrary to Poseidon). This is no shame or whatever, but without such an education you can very easily misinterpret what you read in this regard.

    As for your: "You know fully well that both Harrit and Millette have ruled out Tnemec. Your JREF theory is that both have LaClede paint, and therefore you assume that Millette´s FTIR demonstrates LaClede."

    I think that Harrit et al did not ruled Tnemec in any way (directly in the paper), they simply ignored its existence/presence in the WTC/dust. And, Millette was reluctant to identify his "typical" chips as Laclede primer, since he did not find strontium chromate in them. Therefore (as a true scientist), he stated generally in his conclusions that his typical/prevailing chips are just some red epoxy paint with kaolinite and iron oxide.

    As for your: "After all the JREF poo-pooing about Harrit hiding the FTIR, it is both funny and informative to see the panicked JREF silence to the news that Basile is about to release the FTIR for the correct active chips."

    Believe me that there is no such panic in JREF, since there has been no mention about Basile's FTIR so far:o) And it does not make sense to comment spectra which are not released yet. There is a silence in JREF in "nanothermite matter" simply because there is nothing new to discuss and the general interest in 911 conspiracies is getting weaker and weaker even there...

    1. Please Kminek, you know saying that Harrit et al did not rule out Tnemec is rubbish: As we detail in our essay, the MEK testing in the Bentham paper was originally done to compare the proposed "active chips" to Tnemec! The only WTC paint known to the authors at the time was Tnemec for crying out loud. And we also inform readers that Harrit later also wrote a special essay just to rule out Tnemec.

      Both Harrit et al and Millette have ruled out Tnemec.

      Your pretending that you are "to lazy" to debunk our essay is giving you a poor excuse to pretend that you don´t know about these things.

      For the last time Kminek, you are better than this.

      The JREF silence is pathetic. If you guys still really believed your own BS about Harrit hiding the FTIR, you would be all giddy about Basile´s plan to finally reveal the much talked about FTIR.

      Where are the JREF threads about "Basile is about to reveal the FTIR and debunk Harrit"? And most likely you guys are extra silent because Millette has not published his little report, 16 months later. How sad.

      And we both know that you guys would be all over our essay if you had any chance to debunk any of the main points. You even stay silent about the exposure in part 4 of Sunstealer´s BS, your little poster-boy. You are smart enough to realize that in general the essay exposes a lot of JREF BS, and that your JREF chums would only make more fool of themselves if they tried to refute it with their usual moronic BS.

    2. Kminek, I was not going to argue with you here but just for you since you are my favorite "debunker": Poseidon talks about the "vehicle", not the curing agent; the only one that talks about a curing agent is you.

      The characteristics for aromatics are also given by my link in that comment

      Millette´s FTIR he uses to compare to WTC chips does not have the aromatic peaks to the left of 3000, and also missing the "overtones" from 1665 - 2000.

      His WTC chip FTIR is also missing those main characteristics, so there is no indication that either FTIR represents an aromatic compound.

      The only "clue" that we are given that these spectras represent aromatic is your word today months after that discussion, without any given evidence to back you up.

      If you really can and want to demonstrate for sure that these spectras show aromatic epoxy, feel free to provide explanation with references, and I´ll correct that part of the essay.

      I am leaving this at that, if you want to chase this detail you can either provide references or forget about it - I am not going to argue further about this. The comments at Oystein´s blog and my given references speak for themselves.

      Please do note that even if you could correct this detail, the main point given by me and confirmed by Poseidon still stands; Millette does not have the correct(for LaClede) FTIR to compare to his WTC chips.

      To make sure everybody understands, Millette´s much advertized FTIR match to epoxy is therefore not a match to LaCLede FTIR.

      Let that one sink in my friend.

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  12. Ziggi,
    There is simply no mention in the Bentham paper about Tnemec primer. Concerning the solubility test, authors wrote only about some „paint“, which was unspecified in the paper (as well as paints for meaningless “experiments” with oxyacetylene torch).

    You wrote: “Where are the JREF threads about Basile is about to reveal the FTIR and debunk Harrit?“ Why we should discuss in JREF mere your vague notion that Basile plans to measure some FTIR? As for publishing Millette’s report, it was published and it is available (although it could better to read some final paper in some official journal).

    MEK chip was not sufficiently analyzed in Bentham paper, namely detailed micrographs of its structure prior soaking at submicron scale are sadly missing (since authors naively suppose that all red/gray chips are the same material). It is therefore unknown if this chip had the same microstructure as chips (a) to (d), but its XEDS simply corresponds quite well to the expected XEDS of Tnemec contaminated by calcium sulfate. We know that there are still some little discrepancies, but it does not make sense endlessly discuss the available data on this one single chip. Btw, you mentions Sunstealer in this section and you mentioned him once again as for his “discovery” of Ferranti’s thesis. You wrote: “Sunstealer reports a paper that investigates thermitic materials diluted with standard epoxy (up to 50% by weight epoxy and 80% by volume), so there is actually such a thing as functional nano-thermite embedded in a conventional epoxy matrix.“ But you completely forgot to inform your readers that this composite can behave as a thermite only at extremely conditions (extreme temperatures and pressures) e.g. in warheads:o) At normal condition, such a „concoction“ indeed cannot function as pyrotechnic material without proper oxidant for epoxy binder (which I had tried to explain you several times in the past, apparently without any success). To be continued...

    1. Kminek, this comment of yours is a very good example of why you prefer not to address the essay I and Talboo wrote: You think that it gives you an excuse to keep on repeating the same old BS hand-waving with the MEK chip, which is basically Sunstealer´s BS that I mentioned before, and I encourage anyone that might be reading this to check out the previously mentioned concise debunking of Sunstealer in part 4 (iv)

      Part 4 contains a lot of research by ScottleRoyale and his friends, based on amongst other things talking to the authors of Harrit et al paper. You have already told us here that you respect Scootle and that we should listen to him, so why don´t heed your own advice?

      There is no point repeating all the research spelled out in simple terms in part 4; You are a big boy and I know that you understand it. I keep telling you that this is not JREF and that you do not have that audience here, so STOP THE ACT. The MEK chip featured in the paper was chosen to represent a big bunch that was studied, and as you know once the contamination was washed away all the signals for the Zn and the Ca, etc, that you need for Tnemec disappeared.

      Part 4 exposed all that old Sunstealer/JREF bullshit and shows that it was pretty much debunked from the start, but Sunstealer et al kept on going like nothing happened. You are sensitive about part 4 because it not only debunks that BS in a big way, it also shows how much of a complete fraud Sunstealer is.
      So if still think it is a good idea to persist with reapeating ad nauseum that Sunstealer BS, just write up a post to address part 4.

      There is no point trying to debate someone that simply will-fully ignores rebuttals to his side of the story, and whats more, your behavior is many levels below your true self and your credentials.

      Let go of JREF and that mentality, it has poisoned you and no-body gives a shit about
      the "JREF opinion". Support Basile and his new paper, let the chips fall where they may.

      PS Don´t BS me about Ferranti and oxidant´s. Ferranti has DSC/DTA curves which are certainly not warhead simulations; the materials all ignite under normal circumstances. It is true that his paper investigates materials for warheads but that is another story. By the way, it may be true that the epoxy/thermite mix does not explode unless given certain circumstances, but it still ignites and burns. This is true for basically the whole class of "superthermite", for this is a class of tunable materials that can be tailored to explode given certain circumstances, and stay inert or only burn given other scenarios. This is one of the interesting bits of info given in ref 30 in Harrit et al for the "matches". This is also one of the answers to that old JREF BS of how the material could have been in the Towers without exploding right away during the immpacts, jet-fuel burn etc. This is OLD NEWS, and I would join JREF and try to explain all these things to those morons, but I can´t without puking so I won´t.

      And the problem of the oxidizer for the organic matrix has been discussed before, as well as the solutions. We mention one solution in our essay in part 5.

      And of course if someone wanted to, he or she could design a matrix for air-combustion, eliminating the need for internal oxidizer for the matrix material.

      Remember that quote from Gash about air combustion greatly adding to evergy given organic materials? We cover this in part 1 of our essay..

    2. Ziggi:
      Even of you are right and MEK chip was the same as chips (a) to (d) (for which you have no proofs), there is no reason to think that this chip was nanothermite. It still behaves like a typical paint with some crosslinked polymer binder (swelling in MEK) and it has ridiculously low content of Al and Fe for thermite. XEDS maps are not looking very realistic (and maps for Ca and Zn are missing, btw), e.g. the elevated content of some elements are shown on some "slopes" and "hills" of the surface.
      But crucial is my point "it has ridiculously low content of Al and Fe" (I think). You speculate about tunable "supertermites", but simply no oxidizer for organic (polymer) binder was detected in the MEK chip. Indeed that Ferranti's composites would give exotherms even at normal circumstances (at temperatures around 350 to 500 degrees), since their epoxy binder would burn (similarly as was observed for Bentham chips burned in DSC):o)

    3. Listen up Kminek, you are still talking about the chips as behaving like typical paint, but the Tnemec WTC paint does not remain hard after the MEK like the "a to d" Bentham chips, and it does not ignite at all, let alone reduce iron-oxide and leave molten iron spheres.

      You know that the really remarkable thing is that those thermitic chips do not go through conventional oxidation-burning like paint would, they go through redox/thermite reaction.

      The elemental quantification from XEDS is not reliable, but the assumed low al-rust nanothermite content(ca 10 %) does not matter. The US gov designers/developers of these "superthermites" set the precedent for the "skeletal matrix" materials where the bulk weight is the matrix, not the embedded grains of nanothermite. These "skeletal" materials still go through a thermite reaction and are therefore "thermitic".

      Harrit´s chips look and behave like a skeletal thermitic material, and given the iron spheres it is fair to say that they operate like a thermitic material. Millette could have isolate the same chips and ignited them, and attempted to prove that that the iron spheres are still oxidized as Fe2O3, invalidating the thermite hypothesis - He did not. He could also have attempted to prove that paint can ignite at ca 420 and leave reduced molten iron, but he did not.

      The event of normal paint behaving like thermite would be yet another "first time in history" event.

      I am tired of the BS, if you or anyone else wants to convince me that this is such a remarkable never before in history event, make sure to bring some evidence. PUT UP OR SHUT UP.

      Maybe it is possible that some freak chain of events led to faulty paint doing the impossible, but again get back in touch with your roots and realize that it is only natural and normal to ask for published proof.

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  17. I deleted several posts because of some mismatch I made and there is some new summary:

    • Ziggi: your idea that you can be well-oriented in FTIR spectroscopy of aromatics using your single link is funny. And it is not my fault that you did not understand my debate with Poseidon.

    They are millions of aromatic compounds known and their chemistry and spectroscopy is a pretty complex matter. Basically, the FTIR bands of aromatic stuffs can be/are influenced by any chemical groupings attached to aromatics. Therefore, you have to compare the spectra of the chips directly with aromatic epoxies, not to be “lost in translation”. And neither me, neither Poseidon claimed that Millette’s reference epoxy was not aromatic! It HAD to be aromatic indeed, since it was based on Bisphenol A.

    Poseidon wrote quite correctly that “epoxy amine” was a “vehicle” in Laclede primer. Any common epoxy paint, glue (anything) has two components: monomer or oligomer based on AROMATIC compound Bisphenol A (oligomer or monomer based on DGEBA) and hardener (curing agent), which is usually some amine, less frequently some anhydride, amide or similar. (During curing, DGEBA reacts with the hardener, forming new chemical bonds and the three dimensional polymer network.) Therefore, in any FTIR of cured epoxy resin, characteristic bands of aromatic Bisphenol A/DGEBA must occur. Many months ago I gave the links e.g. to this overview:

    In the relevant part about epoxies you can read:
    „Since both bisphenol epoxy and polycarbonate are based on Bisphenol A, there are a number of similarities in their infrared spectra. There is no carbonyl band in the bisphenol epoxy spectrum (meant for the resin cured with amine, which is the most common type of epoxies, I.K.), but the aromatic ring-breathing mode at 1,510 cm-1 is very strong. Here the 1,610 cm-1 ring-breathing mode is also relatively strong. The C-O stretch is strong and appears as two bands, a broad band with a maximum near 1,247 cm-1 and a narrower and slightly weaker band with a maximum near 1,182 cm-1. Significant intensity is also seen in the out-of-plane aromatic C-H wag at 830 cm-1.“

    Another relevant link is here: (see Table on p. 267) and again, those ring-breathing bands are listed. The band at 3039 cm-1 in Millette's epoxy reference should belong to stretching of C-H of the oxirane ring, stretching of C-H bonds of CH2 and CH groups of aromatics (and aliphatics) should be visible at ca 2965 to 2873 cm-1, according to this table. Apparently, these aromatic bands in epoxies are somehow shifted below 3000 cm-1, in comparison with e.g. toluene shown in your link.

    In both Millette's spectra, we see bands at ca 2850 to 2960 cm-1, which should belong to aromatics, but also to aliphatics (which are also always present in any epoxy resin), so these bands are not really good for unambigous identification of aromatics in such a resin.

    In summary: Millette’s reference spectrum indeed corresponds well to Bisphenol A- based epoxy, as well as the spectrum of red/gray chip. It was clear from the very beginning and I really do not understand why you think that I had some different opinion in my debate in Oystein’s blog. I have NEVER claimed that Millette’s epoxy reference was not aromatic.

    Poseidon was probably right that Jim Millette did not choose "optimal" epoxy as a reference from “JREF point of view”, since his epoxy was probably cured not with amine (like Laclede primer), but with anhydride or amide or anything similar, which (after curing reaction) leads to the formation of carbonyl stuffs.

    But, Millette was not obliged to use epoxy cured by amine (as Poseidon correctly noted)! And it does not really matter, since FTIR of epoxies cured with amines and something else (see above) anyway basically differ only in said strong carbonyl peak in its typical region ca 1600 to 1750 cm-1.

    1. Kminek, you gave no objections in our discussion at Oystein´s blog, and your current objections are a bit weak, especially given different descriptions of aromatic peaks in different sources and that you really mostly end up with pointing out one similar peak at 1500 as firm evidence.

      You also still haven´t given any conclusive reference that confirms that all epoxies must be aromatic by definition, but I will concede this point and change the reference from "aromatic" to the "amine hardener". It is simply not worth it to spend much time trying to confirm or debunk this "aromatic" detail, because the main point still stands anyway: Millette does not have the right kind of LaClede matching FTIR.

      And Kminek, notice that when asked if you think that Basile will confirm Millette´s FTIR, you respond "I am not sure because he could have another type of red paint with different FTIR", but when I point out that Millette does not have FTIR that matches LaClede then you basically declare that it does not matter because all epoxy FTIR are basically the same. You believe two completely different things at the same time my friend.

      Millette has given FTIR for his supposed kaolin-containing red chips that you believe represents Harrit´s chips. Basile says he has identified the same chips as Harrit, and he is about to give us the FTIR for them.

      The minute you get nervous about Basile showing different FTIR and claim that he might then have the "other paint"(Tnemec), you open up a can of worms because Millette has already ruled out Tnemec and he does not admit that is another type of chip in the dust that does not have kaolin, and whats worse, us "truthers" keep saying that there is also another different type of chips in the dust, that does not have kaolin, that ignites and convert iron-oxide to molten iron spheres...

      So dear Kminek, which type of red chip is the one that ignites and converts "rust" into molten iron?

    2. Ziggi, during my editing, I wrongly deleted the part comparing IR bands of Millette's epoxy and red/gray chips with literature data. Therefore once again:

      1) When subtracting bands for kaolinite, both Millette's reference and red/gray chip basically has the same set of bands.
      2) For (aromatic:o) epoxy resin, we expect these distinct characteristic bands (+-ca 5 cm-1): 830, 1182, 1247, 1510, 1610, and those two bands around 2900 cm-1.
      3) Millette's epoxy reference: 830, 1183,1243, 1508, 1607 (1731 for carbonyl) and those two bands around 2900 cm-1.
      4) Millette's red/gray chip: 828, 1181, 1231, 1509, 1604 and those two bands around 2900 cm-1.
      This is why Millette concluded that binder in red/gray chip was epoxy resin, looking also to the overal shapes of both curves, which serve as a kind of "fingerprints".

      One little correction: it is not right that all epoxy resins must be aromatic (also other epoxies are known), but aromatic epoxies should very strongly prevail on the market and Millette naturally chose typical aromatic epoxy based on Bisphenol A.

      Millette DOES have FTIR which matches Laclede, deal with it! Both his spectra correspond to the epoxy, just spectrum of reference sample contains more distinct carbonyl peak (and I repeat that even spectrum of red/gray chip contains carbonyl peak, owing to oxidation during ca 40 years).

      I really do not know how many materials were analyzed by Bentham team, but chips (a) to (d) were very apparently the same material as Millette's prevailing chips, therefore chips containing KAOLINITE. Here, no images can be posted, so please try to supress your nausea regarding JREF for the moment and look e.g. at this my post:

    3. Well you backtrack a bit on the epoxy=aromatic claim but I will still change that bit in our essay. We did however establish clearly that Millette does not have the correct FTIR for LaClede type epoxy, and this was after all backed up by Poseidon whom you have praised here as knowledgeable in these matters, despite his short-comings in other matters.

      It is a very reasonable demand that Millette should have had representative FTIR for the type of paint he hoped to match. With so many different types of epoxy, it is not OK to just have some random epoxy FTIR.

      He should of course have given us the specific FTIR spectras for LaClede and Tnemec, and compared his chips to them.

      Anyway, don´t you agree that it is exciting news that Basile is about resolve this FTIR debate?

  18. Ziggi, since you seem to be disappointed that nobody in JREF knows anything about planned FTIR measurements of Mark Basile, I just added this post there: .

    It is perhaps interesting even for you, since I put there some typical FTIR spectra of alkyd resins (binders in Tnemec red primer). So, provided that Basile's spectra would look similarly to this (with the similar set of bands), they should indicate alkyd resin. But, I have indeed no idea how they will look....

    1. Well thank you Kminek, I appreciate the effort.

      But in general there does not seem to be much of a "FINALLY, we get the truther FTIR to debunk Harrit/confirm Millette."

      The general level of IQ at this JREF forum seems to be exemplified perfectly by someone who identifies with plagues, commenting that Basile and Harrit et al are basically all lying: the pinnacle of JREF "reasoning".

      How can you stand that BS?

  19. ...Of course, Tnemec primer contained several pigments which can change the spectra, but FTIR of alkyd resin itself can be still useful.

  20. OK, Ziggi, we have discussed this stuff again and now let's wait for any new real data, e.g. for these FTIR spectra...

    1. Well yes monsieur Kminek, await for new published data we must!

      - Basile will provide FTIR, and perhaps new tests to try to DIRECTLY confirm elemental al, although that may not be so easy after all. I expect to see a paper that confirms the thermite redox and supporting FTIR, basically confirming conclusion by Harrit et al.

      - On the other hand, I fully expect that Millette will not provide any challenge to the redox-conclusion, and that he will quietly disappear from this venue of research, without publishing his paper.

      - Given that it has been almost 18 months since Millette provided his prelim report and that it has still not been reviewed and published, I suggest to you that maybe it is about time that Mohr confronts Millette and either gets him to submit the paper to a journal or get a clear "forget about it".