Re: Blast in OK City bombing. (was Terrorist Entropy vs...)

James Daugherty (
Sun, 4 Aug 1996 11:28:43 -0400 (EDT)

On Sat, 3 Aug 1996, Kyle L. Webb wrote:

> Ian Goddard wrote:
> > Ammonium nitrate exerts its strongest explosive force along a vertical,
> > not a horizontal, axis. An ammonium nitrate / fuel bomb of the size used,
> > or even much larger, could not exert enough pounds of pressure per square
> > inch (from blast's epicenter to building) to cut the heavy steel re-bar
> > reinforced columns, even deep inside the building, as was seen.
> Ammonium nitrate and fuel oil is a disordered substance, thus having no
> preferred direction in its detonation. Unless the geometry of the bomb is
> such that it channels the blast wave, wouldn't the applied force be pretty
> much isotropic?

Ammonium nitrate sitting in a tub inside a truck could not be effectively
directed against the building. Some experts have claimed the pattern of
damage on the Murrah building would not have been caused by a bomb that
dispersed its energy in all direction....the ground would make much of the
blast go upward. The crater was very shallow as compared to the TNT Saudi
bomb which created a 5-6 foot crater, yet the damage penetrated far into
the Murrah building Ammonium nitrate w/fuel oil apparently does not ignite
as fast as TNT. The bomb in Saudi Arabia tho much more potent only
ripped the facing off the building. It did not penetrate much into the
building as did the OKC bomb.

> The analysis is correct for free standing columns, since the only bending
> moments are due to the difference in applied pressure along the beam.
> However in a building, the connection to the floors provides bending fulcrums
> which allow part of the concrete to be put in tension, causing the concrete to
> break since it has little tensile strength. The connections to outside concrete
> walls provide broad surfaces for the blast pressure to act over that couple
> fairly well to the columns. The reinforcing iron is started bending as well,
> and having lost the compression bearing structure of the concrete, then
> buckles under the weight of the upper floors. The explosive doesn't have to
> have the impulse to sever the beams, it undermines them and the weight of the
> upper floors does the rest. During the falling of a building, some of the
> re-bars will be placed under tremendous tension, and sheared along their width.
> That damage looks superficially similiar to the tearing produced by a nearby
> charge of high explosive along one side of the beam.

The column damage was supposedly "powedering" as occurs when charges are
fastened directly to the column, not bending fractures.

I repeat this info without much back-up other than reading a lot of
articles suppossed experts questioning the Establishment line.

The building should not have been destroyed so fast! Perhaps the most
suspicious aspect of the government investigation!

Forwarded for Comments and Discussion, Not Necessarily Endorsed by:
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