RE: FLT800 Conspiracy Theory

Ian Goddard (
Tue, 16 Feb 1999 18:43:20 -0500

At 08:37 AM 2/16/99 -0600, Billy Brown wrote:

>Ian, I must have missed something. What exactly is the government supposed
>to be covering up in this mess? Absent some motive, I'm more inclined to
>suspect them of incompetence than malice.

IAN: I guess you didn't know about the witnesses. There were over 150 witnesses of a streak of light. Out of 102 that said where it originated, 96 said it originated on from the surface of the Earth. That's from the still covered-up (but leaked through Aviation Week) NTSB witness report.

Dozens of witness accounts are available. Those that I could place on a map are here:

Witnesses say that the streak left a column of white smoke in its path. Solid-rocket fuel gives off white smoke, yet burning jet fuel, what the govt needs you to believe they saw, yields black smoke. Of course when it comes to government claims, most people seem are willing to believe black = white.

>1) An unpowered object, starting from rest, can not fall through atmosphere
>faster than it would through a vacuum. It doesn't matter what shape the
>object is, because any acceleration it gains from aerodynamic effects will
>be smaller than the drag from having to pass through atmosphere.

IAN: We agree, but...

>2) An aircraft that has significant horizontal motion, and then goes into a
>dive, can easily fall much faster than it would in a vacuum. There is a
>rather complex aerodynamic effect that allows it to trade horizontal for
>vertical motion.

IAN: That didn't happen to PAN AM 103, and it went from horizontal to falling without any upward rise. The forward velocity translates into a higher velocity upon impact, but not a faster rate of fall. From the physics textbook "Elementary Classical Physics":

     "If one throws an object horizontally and 
     simultaneously drops a second body from 
     rest, the two objects strike a horizontal 
     plane at the same instant. The thrown object 
     strikes the surface with a larger velocity..."

>I haven't seen anything that shows FLT800 to have 0
>forward momentum - in fact, such a claim seems highly unlikely.

IAN: It seems you also havn't seen the CIA video.

>Moving up
>at a steep slope seems to fit the evidence better, but that would leave the
>aircraft with significant forward motion when it starts its descent.

IAN: An object climbing upwards falls when it has reached zero velocity. What evidence does the physics-defying rocket-like rise fit? Have you found a flaw in Ed Zehr's analysis which proves that the noseless jet would stall in under 5 seconds? If not, based upon what do you make your claim? I guess faith in Govt.

Edward Zehr's dynamic analysis: Zehr's static analysis (scroll to A REALITY CHECK):

The fact is that the CIA video has been abandon by 99% of missile-theory critics, since they realize that Ed Zehr is right. It is still accepted by the government and the media, who do not have to defend their claims.

>3) We don't know exactly when the engines went out. Obviously, if some of
>them were still running when the plane went into its descent this would
>produce a very fast powered dive. This sort of descent can easily approach
>the speed of sound, even for otherwise subsonic aircraft.

IAN: Aviation mechanics will tell you that jet-engine operation depends upon the proper angle of attack of the relative wind, thus, "when the engines pitch up the compressors stall and the engine flames out unless laminar airflow is restored rapidly."

>4) Air/aviation gas explosions are not limited to some puny level of force.
>I don't know who this info originally came from, but they're wrong.
>Depending on the exact mixing conditions you can get anything from
>non-explosive combustion to very large explosions. Under worst-case
>conditions (small droplets dispersed through a large volume of air before
>being ignited) the effect can be equivalent to several times the same mass
>of TNT. The air force makes some impressive bombs that use this principle.

IAN: That's only because a fuel cloud covers more area before it explodes, distributing its max 60 psi force over a large area than the 1000 or so psi of a centrally source stick of TNT.

>5) Burning fuel tanks sometimes produce a significant propulsive force - the
>tank can act like an inefficient rocket engine.

IAN: Any evidence to support that claim?

>When you add up all these factors, it becomes obvious that you really can't
>say anything definitive about the fall rate of a crippled aircraft without a
>lot of detailed information. Even then, getting anything better than a
>rough estimate of its behavior would require a supercomputer-based physics

IAN: You've switched from the problem of knowing what DID happen from the critique the CIA scenario. Knowing what would have happened and knowing what the CIA said happened are two different things. We can know what the CIA said happened.