Re:airline fuel tanks...

Spike Jones (
Mon, 22 Feb 1999 22:41:45 -0800

Guys, it is still me, spike. I am going to try to use upper case letters
for a while. I gave it up for a year, because I was having trouble with carpal tunnel and I thought it might get better if I did not reach for
shift key. It didnt. {8-[

> I don't think your statement that there is never any oxygen in a tank is true. The
> reason why tanks don't blow up so often is that the pumps and sensors are built so
> well that they almost never expose bare conductors to the inside of the tank....

Mike, this troubles me. With hydrocarbon fuels, it requires a lot more air than fuel to make an ignition. Too rich and it wont even burn, never
mind explode. Having a fuel tank leak would cause some air to be vented in, I just dont see how you could get the magic 15 to 1 air to fuel ratio
inside a fuel tank.

> ...happened to the plane, but there is so much of the plane (especially in the area of
> that fuel tank) that is still missing, that I am afraid we will never know.

Perhaps. This whole thread started with the contention (I think) that the CIA report was trying to cover something by claiming a 29 second plunge of the crippled plane into the sea. I realized that the number 29 in itself is an indication they hoped to minimize the time, just as Frys electronics puts a new electronic gazazzafratz on sale for 29.99 because that sounds less than 30 bucks. 29 seconds, well, thats less than half a minute. I imagine it really took about a full terrifying minute for the doomed, and likely conscious, passengers to end their suffering. I would still like to pretend it was only 29 seconds
even if I know better. Either way, I suspect a fuel leak started a fire outside the tank which then (somehow) caused the tank to explode.

When I was a teenager, I and my friends were mentally retarded. We used to take aerosol cans, hold a match under the spray and make a torch. We found that engine starting fluid made the best torch: oh my, one could raise hell with one of those things.

One day, while burning trash, an empty (presumably) hairspray can exploded. Made a great fireball. We reasoned that a full can would do all that much more, so we bought a full can of engine starting fluid, built a fire, threw the can in and ran like hell. We waited and after a surprisingly long time (a couple of minutes) in the fire, the can finally

Did you guess what happened? It doused the fire! No fireball! Waste of three bucks! {8^D I hope I never have kids. spike