Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe – The Open Chemical Physics Journal

Active Thermitic Material Discovered in Dust from the 9/11 World Trade Center Catastrophe.  The Open Chemical Physics Journal. Vol 2. pp.7-31 (25)

Authors: Niels H. Harrit, Jeffrey Farrer, Steven E. Jones, Kevin R. Ryan, Frank M. Legge, Daniel Farnsworth, Gregg Roberts, James R. Gourley, Bradley R. Larsen

Abstract: “We have discovered distinctive red/gray chips in all the samples we have studied of the dust produced by the destruction of the World Trade Center. Examination of four of these samples, collected from separate sites, is reported in this paper. These red/gray chips show marked similarities in all four samples. One sample was collected by a Manhattan resident about ten minutes after the collapse of the second WTC Tower, two the next day, and a fourth about a week later. The properties of these chips were analyzed using optical microscopy, scanning electron microscopy (SEM), X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy (XEDS), and differential scanning calorimetry (DSC). The red material contains grains approximately 100 nm across which are largely iron oxide, while aluminum is contained in tiny plate-like structures. Separation of components using methyl ethyl ketone demonstrated that elemental aluminum is present. The iron oxide and aluminum are intimately mixed in the red material. When ignited in a DSC device the chips exhibit large but narrow exotherms occurring at approximately 430 °C, far below the normal ignition temperature for conventional thermite. Numerous iron-rich spheres are clearly observed in the residue following the ignition of these peculiar red/gray chips. The red portion of these chips is found to be an unreacted thermitic material and highly energetic.” 

Affiliation: Department of Chemistry, University of Copenhagen, Copenhagen, DK-2100, Denmark. 

Keywords: JScanning electron microscopy, X-ray energy dispersive spectroscopy, Differential scanning calorimetry, DSC analysis, World Trade Center, WTC dust, 9/11, Iron-rich microspheres, Thermite, Super-thermite, Energetic nanocomposites, Nano-thermite 


Commentary at 

Explosives Found in World Trade Center Dust: Scientists Discover Both Residues And Unignited Fragments Of High-Tech Metal Incendiaries In Debris From the Twin Towers – Jim Hoffman, April 3, 2009

Wake Up and Smell the Aluminothermic Nanocomposite Explosives– Jim Hoffman, April 3, 2009


Michael Wolsey of podcasts interviews with the paper’s authors: 

April 10, 2009- Visibility 9-11 Welcomes Chemist Dr. Niels H. Harrit

Transcript from Visibility 9-11; A Basic Chemistry Lesson with Dr. Niels Harrit

“Danish chemist Dr. Niels H. Harrit.  Dr. Harrit is an associate professor of chemistry at the University of Copenhagen in Denmark and is the author/or co-author of nearly 60 peer reviewed scientific papers.  Dr. Harrit has also served on numerous occasions as a peer reviewer/referee for scientific papers written by others.”              

April 4, 2009- Visibility 9-11 Welcomes Back Dr. Steven E. Jones

“Dr. Jones is a retired physics professor and first emerged in late 2005 with his important paper Why Indeed Did the World Trade Center Buildings Completely Collapse?, and has continued to do groundbreaking research into the “collapses” of all three high rise buildings on September 11th, 2001.  

“Dr. Jones both sits as co-editor at the Journal of 9-11 Studies and is the founder of Scholars for 9-11 Truth and Justice.  He has been a stalwart in the scientific and scholarly area of the 9-11 Truth Movement.” 

April 3, 2009- Visibility 9-11 Welcomes Back Kevin Ryan

“Kevin is a chemist and is formerly of Underwriter Laboratories and became a 9-11 whistleblower when he was fired for writing his now infamous 2004 letter  to Frank Gayle at the National Institute for Standards and Technology (NIST).  Kevin has been very prolific in his research since getting fired by UL and has either authored or co-authored many important papers relating to 9-11 since 2004. 

“Kevin sits as a co-editor at the Journal of 9-11 Studies and has been a stalwart in the scientific and scholarly area of the 9-11 Truth Movement.”


Also published in peer-reviewed journals:

October 19, 2008. “Discussion of “Mechanics of Progressive Collapse: Learning from World Trade Center and Building Demolitions” by Zdene k P. Bazant and Mathieu Verdure” Journal of Engineering Mechanics. (pg. 915)    

At, Gourley discusses the process of getting the response accepted at JOM, and Bazant’s response to his: James Gourley Published in “The Journal of Engineering Mechanics”      

August 4, 2008. “Environmental anomalies at the World Trade Center: evidence for energetic materials”. The Environmentalist.

April 19, 2008. “Fourteen Points of Agreement with Official Government Reports on the World Trade Center Destruction”. The Open Civil Engineering Journal. 

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