Tuesday, September 08, 2009

Terrorising the laws of physics

What do 9/11 and the liquid bomb plot have in common? They both replace reality with make-belief by seriously violating the laws of physics. And they represent a propaganda effort by today's war governments Joseph Goebbels would be proud of, thereby demonstrating that the masses in a democratic society can be easily fooled through the repeated use of media and are thus unable to make informed choices - dictatorship by consent.

Let's start with 9/11: According to the propaganda the heat of burning kerosene fuel from the aircraft which hit the high-rise buildings melted the steel reinforcements and made the steel/concrete structure collapse. This is an impossibility unless all the teachings of physics are going to be more radically revised than ever before: the hottest possible temperature of burning kerosene is 825°C, whilst steel starts melting at 1510°C. If burning kerosene melted steel or other metals (such as aluminium, with a lower melting point), airo engines would arrive liquidised before any jet plane ever made a safe landing. Even if the steel melted, the collapse of the building would have been gradual and not immediate; instead it simply disappeared into its own footprint with all the concrete being pulverised and none of the lower floors putting up resistance to the collapsing upper ones. According to the current state of the art of physics, this can only be achieved by a controlled demolition, and recent finds of thermite in the rubble support this claim. Yet, the myth wins over the facts.

Likewise with the liquid bomb plot for which three alleged Muslim terrorists have just been convicted of plotting mass murder in the sky. According to the official propaganda story, the key ingredient was hydrogen peroxide, readily available as hair bleach or medicated mouthwash, albeit at low concentrations. To buy it at the high concentrations needed for manufacturing an explosive would spark an immediate detection. But as the story goes, this was to be mixed with sulphuric acid and acetone (also known as nail polish remover) and smuggled in drinks bottles onto an aircraft together with detonators. Fantastic! Here's the physics of it: if you mix high-strength hydrogen peroxide with sulphuric acid it gets very hot, so you do get some kind of a mini explosion, or more likely a big splash. It would also soon melt through the plastic drinks bottle you were going to carry it in. To turn it into a potent explosive you still have to mix in the acetone, which has to be done at below zero temperatures, typically around -78°C, if you want an explosive you can ignite later. Now it does get very cold in the upper airways, but not inside the pressurised aircraft cabin. The very best our wannabe terrorist could achieve is to injure himself in the airplane's bathroom. The wild stories of ripping open the fuselage of the aircraft are pure imagination. By the way, airport security were not at all bothered about the potency of the liquids: On the day John Reid announced the discovery of the plot, they simply poured all liquids confiscated from the travelling public into one big container, and nothing went bang. Of course, the foul smell of sulphuric acid and acetone would immediately have revealed any harmful chemicals from amongst the gallons of harmful water and body shampoo taken of the unsuspecting public.

The stuff described makes for a nice chemical experiment with the potential to cause serious injury to the experimenter. It does not make a liquid explosive with the potential to blow a hole in an airliner, such as e.g. nitroglycerine. There are no ready-to-mix liquid explosive components out there, which detonate when mixed together, and any self-respecting chemical scientist knows that. All the whole saga tells us is that the teaching of physics and chemistry in American and British schools is very poor. And that the jury members were schooled in Britain.