| Dr. Richard Muller appeared to dismiss the concept of building foundations, stating that buildings “are made lightweight on purpose, so that you don’t have to have a large structure at the bottom to hold it up”
The Pacifica radio debate that aired on the 10th anniversary of 9/11 featured a quartet of technical specialists. Architect Richard Gage, AIA, and chemist Niels Harrit, Ph.D., faced off against physicist Dave Thomas and physics professor Richard Muller, Ph.D., in a discussion about the science behind the WTC catastrophe.
Since all four participants are accomplished professionals with decades of experience, the casual listener might expect the debate to honor the laws of physics. Unfortunately, that was not the case, as Muller and Thomas repeatedly violated the most basic physical and chemical principles in their attempt to dismiss the evidence of controlled demolition and prop up the theory of fire-induced collapse. Here are a few of their most peculiar scientific fallacies:
Myth #1: Jet fuel is an excellent catalyst for controlled demolition
Explosive devices have been the standard tool for controlled demolition of steel-framed buildings for decades. However, according to Dr. Muller, fuel used in automobiles and airplanes is the best candidate for the job.
“If I were a conspirator and wanted to bring down a building, I wouldn’t use thermite,” Muller said. “I would somehow get gasoline into that building and set it on fire.”
He later reaffirmed this statement, saying that “jet fuel is really the way to go” when attempting to destroy a steel building.
Dr. Harrit highlighted the problems with Muller’s recommendation in his response. “Never before in history has a steel framed skyscraper collapsed due to fire,” Harrit explained. He also described the numerous industry experiments that have proven that even extremely hot fires cannot get hot enough to destroy steel structures.
Myth #2: Buildings are like houses of cards
Architects and engineers designed high-rises like the Twin Towers and WTC 7 to withstand the test of time, and endure fires, earthquakes and hurricanes without collapsing. Dr. Muller, on the other hand, cast the properties of these buildings in a more fragile light.
While describing the “pancake theory” of progressive collapse, Muller declared, “every time you hit another floor you have to accelerate that, so it won’t quite be at free fall… but buildings are like houses of cards.”
This “house of cards” analogy fell apart when Gage described the massive strength of the steel columns used in these buildings. “They are five times stronger than they need to be to hold this building up,” he said. “They have resistance. That’s why we feel comfortable going into buildings.”
Myth #3: The steel beams in the WTC skyscrapers have properties similar to plastic straws
| Physicist Dave Thomas reused the failed strategy he employed in last year’s 9/11 debate by attempting to rewrite the laws of science
One might compare the structural integrity of steel beams to items that are more familiar to the average person. In this debate, Dr. Muller decided to make an unlikely comparison that ignores essential differences in material properties between plastic and steel.
“Take a soda straw and squeeze it between your hands,” Muller instructed. “It’s an enormous force, except when you push a little hard and then suddenly it goes, and there’s no resistance whatsoever… that’s buckling.”
Thomas repeated Muller’s dubious assertion later in the debate, saying that “once you crimp a straw, it doesn’t support, and that’s where you get the 2.25 seconds of free fall” in the destruction of Building 7.
Dr. Harrit used his rebuttal time to focus on the significance of free fall of Building 7. He pointed out that it is the “key observation” that indicates the internal structure had been removed. “This can only be accomplished by explosives fired in a very accurate sequence,” Harrit added.
Both Thomas and Mueller also ignored the fact that buildings are built with steel frame columns in geometries that specifically create enormous resistance to buckling.
Myth #4: You can stack several books on a rolled sheet of paper to simulate the Twin Towers
| Muller’s argument that steel beams bend like soda straws could not withstand the weight of centuries of scientific research
Later in the debate, Muller used another illogical analogy to misrepresent the structure of the Twin Towers: “Take a sheet of paper, roll it into a cylinder, put a little Scotch tape on it, and then put it on its end and put a book on top… Then put a second book and then a third, and add them up until the thing collapses... This is the nature of buckling.”
Gage addressed this false comparison after the debate was over. “One of the things that Muller failed to mention was that the mass of the books is hundreds of times greater than the mass of the paper. In the Twin Towers the opposite is true. The steel structure gets heavier and stronger at each floor underneath the point of jet plane impacts. It’s not books on top of paper – it’s more like books on top of an even heavier stack of books.”
The unscientific claims Muller and Thomas made are a reminder that it is futile for technical professionals who have studied the explosive 9/11 evidence to defend the official narrative. This should come as no surprise to the more than 1600 architects and engineers who have done the research and are demanding a scientifically honest investigation of the WTC catastrophe. As the arguments in favor of the government’s account become more irrational, the calls for justice and accountability are growing louder around the world.