Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists Claims with Simple Google Searches

By: Myles Power Edited by: Hannah

I recently got the opportunity to visit one of my favorite cities in the world - New York, New York. Even though I've been to The Big Apple before, I'm always flabbergasted by the buildings, the people, and the general hustle and bustle of the big city. I happened to be there on September 11th this year and took the opportunity to walk down to Ground Zero, to talk to 9/11 'truthers' about the tragic events of 2001. All of the truthers' claims can be debunked by a little research, but three of them need only the simplest of Google searches to be proved utterly incorrect; three that none of the 9/11 truthers had any excuse in spouting that morning.

“Molten aluminum does not glow orange”

9/11 conspiracy theorists claim that the molten material seen flowing from the south tower minutes before its collapse is evidence of thermite.

According to ‘truthers’, this molten material came from one of a score of devices planted on every floor, which was accidentally ignited; these devices were designed to cut the steel beams and allow the buildings to collapse. They also say that a fire fuelled by office supplied and jet fuel would not be sufficient to melt steel, so it must have been molten iron from a thermite reaction.

Looking past how you could attach these devices on every floor without the office workers knowing, or how they could survive the sheer impact, or for that matter the fact that thermite has never been used to take down a building before, they do have a point. The fires at the south tower are not hot enough to melt steel, but they are hot enough to melt aluminum. Aluminum has a melting point of 660*C, depending on the alloy, and jet fuel burns at 980*C. With the vast amount of debris from the aircraft in the north-east corner (80% of which was aluminum – about 64,000kg), it’s most likely that the molten material seen flowing from the building is molten aluminium. Truthers believe however, that molten aluminium is a silvery colour, like mercury, and does not glow orange.

To debunk this one, simply run a Google image search for molten aluminum’. The results shows multiple images of the stuff, glowing an orange-ish colour. The search even brings up a diagram, showing the colour of aluminium at different temperatures. What’s interesting is that at 980*C (the temperature at which jet fuel burns), aluminium glows light orange, just as shown in the video.


“The twin towers fell at free fall speed”

Nearly all of the truthers I met at Ground Zero that day said that the twin towers both fell at free fall speed. They claim that the fact the buildings fell at speed proves that explosives helped to take down the towers. This is already so easy to disprove, just by looking at the footage and timing the collapse for yourself. In fact, most of the footage even shows that parts of the lower portions of both towers (60 stories of WTC 1 and 40 stories of WTC 2) remained standing for up to 25 seconds after the start of the initial collapse, before they too fall down.

But there is an even simpler way to debunk this.  Simply run a Google image search for WTC collapse’. There are hundreds, if not thousands, of images of the collapse of World Trade Center towers 1 and 2. Every single truther will have seen these images, so in order to debunk this particular theory, all it takes is a little common sense; in every single photo you can see columns and debris below the point the building is collapsing. The columns and debris are free falling and outpacing the collapse of the building. This therefore means that the buildings fell well below free fall speed; otherwise they would have been falling at the same pace!

“No steel structure has ever collapsed dud to fire”

One of the arguments that the 9/11 truthers repeatedly mentioned was that WTC 1, 2 and 7 were the first steel-framed structures to collapse because of fire. Ignoring the fact that these buildings where damaged by planes crashing into them and falling debris, are they the only ones to collapse because of fire alone? A little bit of research shows that actually, in the past, many steel-framed structures have collapsed from fire alone. These include: Dogwood Elementary School; Windsor Tower; Faculty of Architecture Building; etc, etc. But these examples can take a while to find, so what if there was an example of a steel structure collapsing after being weakened by fire, that was much easier to track down. Like say, World Trade Center 5.

Yes, believe it or not truthers, there was a World Trade Center 3, 4, 5 and 6. All had to be demolished because they were damaged beyond repair after the attacks. If you were to GoogleWorld Trade Center 5′, you will learn that it was a nine-story building that stood east of the north tower. The building was the least damaged of the complex, but suffered partial collapse due to impact from steel and debris from WTC 1, and collapse due to fire damage. Four floors inside part of the building collapsed when some of the connections between the structural steel beams failed. It amazes me that 9/11 truthers say that steel structures can’t collapse dure to fire alone when there is one that partially collapsed at the World Trade Center complex.

In conclusion, I believe that in this era of information, it is inexcusable to make these kind of mistakes; mistakes that only take one quick Google search and some common sense to correct. On a more positive note though, in a city of 8.2 million, only around 30 truthers turned up. This is mostly likely down to sites like Google, where people can do the research themselves, and analyse these theories as being the ridiculous, unscientific bullshit they are.

About Myles Power (744 Articles)
My name is Myles Power, and I run the educational YouTube channel, powerm1985. I spend what little free time I have sharing my love of SCIENCE! through home experiments, visiting sites of scientific interest, and angrily ranting at pseudoscience proponents. I am also one of the founding members of the podcast 'The League of Nerds' - which I co-host with James from 'The History of Infection'.

16 Comments on Debunking 9/11 Conspiracy Theorists Claims with Simple Google Searches

  1. Besides RKOwens4 on YT, there aren’t nearly enough people addressing this ongoing problem with conspiracy theories. Over time, I believe that the research, basic laws of physics, maths and science in general with shed more light on this subject. And with an entertaining twist. Here’s hoping!


    • Problem. The aluminum at 980 degrees looks pinky grey colored and the WTC molten liquid looks bright yellowy orange they look nothing the same?


      • laughingfish13 // April 14, 2014 at 9:07 pm //

        That can also be explained. The grey is likely due to charred and cooling organic materials mixed with the aluminum, leaving behind a carbon crust of sorts on the outside. The pink tinge is probably from the aluminum in the chosen photo being shot from a different angle, or possibly from the aluminum being heated at a lower temperature. Here is in fact the chart of what molten aluminum can look like at different temperatures: As you can see, aluminum is perfectly capable of glowing orange at around 980 degrees Celsius, which is the exact temperature Jet Fuel burns at. The aluminum in the picture Myles used is clearly not being heated that hot. Also, the molten material in the 9/11 picture is very, very clearly orange to light orange, not “yellow-orange” as you claim (unless you’re colorblind).


      • The horrible fact is that this was the only river of aluminum apparently which implies there had to be a river formation inside the building where all over its river bedding and surrounding area all was provided to maintain the bright yellow glowing temperature of the liquid metal. This is most unlikely. The wreck caused by the impact, the random damage caused, can hardly have had formed itself into a furnace like construct. To bring aluminum to such high temperatures a well controlled duct blowing air at a well concentrated air flow has to be measurely applied inside an enclosure containing burning substance. The towers suffered from open fires, not furnace fires. On top of that Kevin Ryan of Underwriters Laboratories had access to files of the company he worked for that prove the steel was certified to withstand such fires without being compromised in their strength, whatever naysayers like to believe to maintain their worldviews. The fact there were steel beams that were bent without bulges implies absolutely no mechanical twisting due to gravitational force. You must be in full time denial to ignore these signs aka red flags.

        But hey, why arguing this when we are dealing with official reports that were made with preconcieved conclusions that no ground support by terrorists was done during the event. In 1993 explosives were used in the basement of the wtc towerbuilding.

        The government sanctioned investigations have steered away of any possible explosives hypothesis and in their pretence did not do one single forensic lab tests for the purpose of looking for explosives residue whether reacted or unreacted. That makes any subsequent hypothesis actually null and void since scientific research principles have been violated by Bazant et al. The kowtow postures of these individuals is pathetic.

        Everything has to be redone by uncorruptable individuals. Both spokespersons for NIST and FEMA have sold their soul and got along submitting themselves into kowtow lip service for the US government. The sort that would betray their military company to save their own skin. There is no lower way of betrayal.

        Another awful mistake, for the sake of argument, is that the freefall isn’t a freefall however a downward succession of timed destructions at pace of the falling debris. This is clearly visible in one ‘collapse’ video where also visible are dust expulsions. The amount of frames per second show the velocities of the dust being expulsed exceeding that of normal transfer of air pressure due to falling ‘pancaking’ debris.

        It is poor to assume that bright yellow metal can exit a building that is on fire. This is just impossible because there are simply no conditions that provide for the development of such heat to such amount regarding the construct in and around the exit point where this glowing matter comes out. It would mean that all that is surrounded by this exit point can be replaced by a furnace installation so hot because of so much concentrated energy to sustain that heat. If the compromised structure is already far from what is able to contain the heat as with a furnace pot, even less that energy can be concentrated to the extend it maintains the necessary temperature to make the metal glow.

        But again, why arguing in an attempt to defend one’s point of view when the official reports have already been corrupted because of preconception on the part of those involved in the state sanctioned research. I am especially pointing to the omission of forensic laboratory investigation into the possibility of ground support by means of the techniques used by the ‘WTC 1993 terrorist bombing’.


  2. The trouble with the so called ‘truthers’ is that they start out with a theory first and then look for ways to back it up, disregarding any and all facts which do not support (or which blatantly contradict) their pet theories. This is not scientific.

    The proper way to look at events like 9/11 is to start out determining what the main evidence is first, and in the process we let the *evidence* itself tell us what happened, which it surely will, if we don’t impose our own biases and assumptions onto it.

    Thermite (and controlled demolition in general) is problematic as a theory (which is all it is) because this theory is contradicted by even the most basic evidence. For a start thermite is an incendiary. Thermite is used to weld railroad tracks. Thermite was also used in WW2 to incinerate paper documents very quickly (when a command centre was about to be captured by the enemy they would set off thermite just before fleeing, thus incinerating all the paper in the room – literally in a flash). Basically thermite is hot stuff!

    In order to cause a controlled demolition using thermite (dropping the towers into their own footprints, as is the aim of most controlled demo’s) every steel column would have to have been cut (via melting) on most, if not all, of the floors. This would have produced a colossal amount of heat and light, causing the towers to look like giant sparklers (sparklers are basically thermite reactions on a stick). Yet we saw no light and felt no heat as the towers came apart, and the resulting dust cloud was not hot either. We know this because people who were enveloped by the dust cloud were not burned. Plus there was all that unburned paper everywhere!

    Some ‘thermite theorists’ talk about their being molten metal under the rubble which was thousands of degrees for weeks. Well if there was any molten metal under ground zero it certainly was NOT hot or else it would have caused steam explosions when the firemen sprayed the rubble with water (as they did for many weeks). And no cooled ‘plug’ of (once molten) metal was ever excavated from ground zero when they started digging down to the bedrock.

    Each tower had 47 box columns in the cores and 240 box columns in the outer walls = 287 steel box columns in total. These columns were made out of steel up to 5 inches thick. Imagine the amount of energy (in this case heat) required to slice just one of these columns almost instantly (as is required for a controlled demo). Now multiply that by 287 columns x the number of floors which would have had thermite planted in them. Let’s be conservative and suppose every fifth floor had thermite planted on the columns. That’s still 22 floors x 287 columns = 6314 separate thermite reactions…… each one producing massive amounts of heat and light (ie capable of melting inches thick steel almost instantly).

    Yet we see no heat or light produced as the towers come apart. Was special cold and invisible thermite used?! (joke)

    Also we know that 14 people survived in ‘Stairwell B’ inside the core at the base of WTC1. They were not burned by melted steel and thermite raining down on them. How could thermite have melted the steel columns of the towers, yet left people inside the cores completely unburned? (I think people usually melt before steel does). Even if conventional explosives had been used these people would have been blown up along with the core columns that were being destroyed right above their heads.

    Like I said, we need to forget about ‘theories’ and just let the evidence itself tell us what did and did not happen on that day. If you start with the evidence first it will never lead you in the direction of thermite.

    So where exactly does the evidence lead us? Let’s keep going :)

    These 14 survivors were also not crushed or buried by 110 floors (500,000 tons) of steel and concrete collapsing down on top of them. In fact when the dust cleared they looked up and saw sunlight streaming in from a hole ABOVE their heads. And most of them climbed UP and out of stairwell B without assistance. Try counting from 1 to 110 while visualising each of the 110 concrete floors which was an acre in size, plus all the steel columns, plus all the furniture and fixings, plus all the other materials (500,000 tons in total). 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8 ….. 56, 57, 58….. 106, 107, 108, 109, 110….phew!

    ….. now imagine being *underneath* all that material (stacked up 1300 feet above you) and having it come crashing down on top of you. I think you are going to be squished by it!

    But even if by some miracle you survived in a pocket of uncrushed building you are still going to be buried under approximately 500,000 tons of debris (110 acres of concrete floors, and over 70 miles of inches thick steel box columns, plus all the fixtures and fittings, steel trusses, horizontal members, lift shafts, carpets, wiring, air conditioning etc).

    Yet we know there was no squishing of people, and there was no significant debris pile either. We know this because those 14 survivors crawled up and out by themselves.

    Here is a picture of the debris ‘pile’ of WTC1: This photograph was taken on 9/11. Note the ambulance parked at *street level* just outside. Note the distinctive wide lobby columns merging into the more closely spaced columns above lobby level.

    Not only did people walk out of that (virtuously non existent) debris pile unaided, we see that the ambulance is not buried either, nor is it even dented! In the foreground we see only aluminium cladding, a few bits of steel and lots of unburned paper and lots of thick dust. There is hardly any rubble pile there at all.

    What happened to the 70 miles of steel box columns? What happened to the ‘spire’ (the 700 ft tall remnants of the core which remained standing for a few seconds)? The core contained 11 miles of box columns. Let’s say the ‘spire’ itself contained half of that at only 5 miles. There should be 5 miles of box steel lying on top of the debris (on top of the other 65 miles of columns).

    But there isn’t.

    There’s HARDLY ANY material there at all (relative to what was there previously). The *evidence* says the majority of the mass of the building is NOT to be found in or around their footprints.

    So where did the majority of each towers’ mass go?

    Look at this picture of one of the towers under construction. Note the parked cars out front (analogous to the ambulance in the previous picture). Now imagine JUST this unfinished steel structure collapsing. It is still going to make quite a big pile. Probably taller than the pile we saw on 9/11, wouldn’t you say? (look at the size of the parked cars)

    How can that be?! How can approx 4 floors of unfinished bare steel structure make a bigger pile than 110 floors of complete building?

    Well …. let’s stick with the evidence. We can observe that the structural steel was in fact turning to dust even in mid air (turning to dust even as it was free falling beside the towers). In free fall there are no forces acting on the steel, except for the rush of air, so this ‘dustification’ can’t due to pulverisation of steel. And anyway steel does NOT pulverise, not even when it hits the ground at terminal velocity. (and of course this steel is turning to dust in the air – well before it hits the ground)

    The dust is clearly coming from the steel itself. It is not dust being blown off the steel, or dust being dragged behind in its wake. The dust can be seen ‘pumping out’ from the steel itself. Here’s a slow motion high def clip – follow each piece of steel as it falls and observe the thick, billowing dust/ powder which is being produced by each falling chunk of steel.

    (On a side note, remember that all material we see falling beside the tower is actually *relieving* the tower of mass and can’t possibly be contributing to any type of ‘collapse’. A gravity collapse requires *intact* material to remain *within* the boundaries of the tower to act as a pile driver. Even if a floor turns to dust and then remains within the boundaries of the tower it still can’t contribute to the collapse because the material now has too much surface area to mass ratio. And so even if the floors were turning to dust due to smashing against the other floors below that would use up all their kinetic energy and the collapse would have to stop – just as a hammer which strikes a nail and then shatters can’t continue to drive that nail into wood).

    Even the spire appears to turn to dust in mid air. If the spire collapsed in a heap on the ground then where is the photographic evidence showing where it is? It was the last thing to fall on 9/11 (apart from WTC7) so it should be lying on top. But it is nowhere to be seen!

    Also we know the spire remained standing after the rest of WTC1 went away. This spire had been relieved of all of the weight of the tower and now only had to support itself. Remember the base of the spire used steel box columns which were up to 5 inches thick. What caused the spire to come down? And why did it appear to ‘faint’ vertically downwards? And why is there no trace of it in (or around) the footprint of WTC1?

    If it was damaged from debris of a collapsing building wouldn’t it be more likely to have fallen sideways, like a tree? The spire was about 700 ft tall (we see it is a bit higher than WTC7). If it had fallen sideways it would crashed down onto several blocks. But we no that it didn’t. It surely didn’t drop vertically down into a 700 ft hole! Anyway there were 14 people who survived inside the base of the spire.

    If it didn’t turn to dust in mid air, as it appears to do, then where on earth did it go?!

    All the video/ photographic evidence is consistent and all of it shows the towers turing to dust in mid air *before they even hit the ground*. In fact most of the upper parts of the building do not appear to really hit the ground at all – the material has already been transformed into a thick cloud of dust before any of it even reaches ground level.

    This would explain why the 14 people were not crushed or buried (but they were covered in dust!). It would explain why there is so little debris at and around the base of the towers. It would explain why the ambulance was not crushed or buried. It would explain the massive dust cloud which enveloped all of lower Manhattan blocking out 100% of the sunlight for a few minutes.

    It would also explain the shockingly small seismic disturbance recorded during each towers’ demise. The seismic signal had no S or P waves and the small surface waves measured suggested 20 story buildings collapsing, not 110 story buildings. (Incidentally WTC7’s seismic signal was barely discernible from background noise and approx equivalent to a 2 story building collapsing. WTC7 was 47 stories tall and 230,000 tons).

    People like to argue about whether the towers were blown up with thermite or brought down by planes (or whatever)… but the real issue is not between theory A vs theory B (or theory C, D, E…). The real issue is between sticking with your favourite theory vs sticking to the evidence.

    Either we promote our little pet theory, or we stay true to the scientific method and stick to the *evidence* …. whatever that evidence might be. If the evidence contradicts one (or all) of the current popular theories then we should disregard those theories. What we should never do is disregard physical evidence just because it contradicts our favourite theory. That is not science, that is religion!

    The hard, physical, verifiable evidence from numerous different sources clearly and blatantly shows us that the towers did not burn up, nor did they slam to the ground, they turned to dust in mid air.

    However remarkable that might sound, there is zero evidence to contradicts this. If you have any evidence to the contrary then I’d be interested to see it :)

    PS there are some more useful high res photos (and more supporting evidence) on this page.


    • I just asked/commented about the debris before reading this. Thank you, that was helpful although it does not much answer the question in my head as to *what* turned the steel into dust in mid air though :/ ? Thanks for the knowledge :D


  3. I still dont get why the FBI wana withheld a ton of evidence….
    i suggest u watch <a href="; lads….it will shed some more light on the subject at hand…i also suggest u check out <a href="; to see an in depth analyses of the whole 9/11 thing:D


    • laughingfish13 // April 14, 2014 at 9:10 pm // Reply

      I distrust the government on certain issues as much as the next person, but come on now… You really think having the FBI release all the info about terrorist attacks they knew *directly after the 9/11 attacks* would have been a smart move? Think about how many people would have panicked. Probably including yourself.


  4. I recently had a similar experience on Facebook. It really doesn’t take long to find dis confirmation of their talking points using Google. Yes temperatures lower than the melting point of steel can structurally compromise it, yes those diagonal cuts on girders were made by power tools–after the tower fell not before, and no there isn’t any evidence of thermite being used because it’s meaningless to find an insignificant quantitiy of thermtie dust since it’s made from metals that we should expect to find in the wreckage of towers brought down by planes being flown into them…Then they just started calling me stupid, bringing up red herrings, and pretending that 9/11 being an inside job was completely obvious so it didn’t need to be backed up with any facts.


    • laughingfish13 // April 14, 2014 at 9:12 pm // Reply

      “Then they just started calling me stupid, bringing up red herrings, and pretending that 9/11 being an inside job was completely obvious so it didn’t need to be backed up with any facts.”

      Yeah, but that’s par for the course for any conspiracy theorist who has no ‘evidence’ left on which to base their claims, because you just debunked it all. Hilarious to watch, isn’t it?


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