The White Flames of Thermite  

by Christopher Bollyn 

21 April 2006

In his paper, "Why Did the World Trade Center Collapse? Science, Engineering, and Speculation," Prof. Thomas Eagar of MIT wrote:

"Some reports suggest that the aluminum from the aircraft ignited, creating very high temperatures. While it is possible to ignite aluminum under special conditions, such conditions are not commonly attained in a hydrocarbon-based diffuse flame. In addition, the flame would be white hot, like a giant sparkler. There was no evidence of such aluminum ignition, which would have been visible even through the dense soot."

Eagar is apparently unaware of photographs and videos of the World Trade Center towers that show exactly the white flames that occur when thermite reacts producing molten iron and aluminum oxide. In the process steel can be cut like butter.

A white hot flame burning at the corner of WTC 2.  This flame is producing the white smoke characteristic of Thermite.

When sulphur is added to the aluminum-ferrous oxide mixture, the compound is known as thermate and the steel cutting capability is greatly increased because the melting temperature of the steel is lowered. In this case the steel columns of the WTC could have been cut as easily as a warm knife slicing through butter.

This white flame is located at the same corner of the South Tower, at the 81st floor, at the same time as the cascade of molten metal flowed from the corner - at the same level. This thermite reaction appears to be occurring on the end of a column which has fallen through the corner. In the previous photo one can see that this metal column appears to have fallen through the corner.

This white flame is producing whitish oxides - exactly what one would find with a thermite reaction. This is the aluminum oxide that is produced in the reaction. The other products are molten iron and an immense amount of heat.  Clearly something was burning white hot on steel columns at the 81st floor area and creating a large amount of molten iron. What was burning here if not thermite or thermate?