Real-World Physics Review for "Truthers"

It’s time for a physics review, and by that, I mean REAL WORLD physics, not “truther” physics.

First, there is a mistake I made regarding the behavior of fires in previous articles.  In point of fact, fire will go wherever there is fuel (fuel meaning something combustible), meaning fire will go up, down, sideways, wherever the fuel is.  Hint to “truthers:” This is what’s known as admitting to and correcting a mistake- something honest people, which eliminates “truthers-” do.

Now, back to the physics review.

Fact number one, mass does not move mass, force does, and force, as per Newton’s 2nd Law, which can be found in any physics book, and states that force equals mass times acceleration, written as F = ma. Since acceleration is defined as a change in velocity over time, written as Δv/t. (As I have pointed out ages ago, velocity is a component of acceleration). Bowling is an excellent example.  Just put the bowling ball and the pin next to each other so they’re touching and nothing will happen.  Yes, the bowling ball and the pin have mass, but since neither is moving, there’s no acceleration and no force.  However, when you throw the ball down the lane, that’s another story, because the bowling ball now has acceleration ( it went from not moving at all to moving at whatever speed you threw it at, thereby resulting in a change of velocity over time, which is the definition of acceleration.

Fact number two:  Had the back half of the plane sheared off, it would have followed the front half in as per Newton’s first law, the law of inertia, which states, “in the absence of a net force, a body either is at rest or moves in a straight line with constant speed.” (reference)  As a matter of fact, Newton’s 1st law is the reason you should wear your seat belt while driving.  Let’s say you’re driving a car at 65 MPH, and have to slam on the brakes for some reason. You are not physically attached to the car, meaning that if you are not wearing your seatbelt when you slam on the brakes, the car will stop but you will continue forward at 65 MPH (this is not taking into account the impact with the windshield) as per Newton’s 1st law. Wearing the seatbelt prevents this.

Fact number 3:  Despite “truther” claims to the contrary, you can move more with less. Given enough momentum, which is mass times velocity a small vehicle can indeed shove a larger one.  I have seen it happen at one of my local shopping malls. An SUV, which had the green left turn arrow, was in the process of turning, meaning the SUV was not going very fast, so despite its mass, it’s momentum was on the low side.  As the SUV was turning, a speeding sports car plowed through a red light and rammed the SUV, shoving the SUV and causing it to spin out because, despite its smaller size, the sports car, which was speeding, had a much higher velocity and therefore more momentum. Any physics book will tell you that when two objects collide, the object that has the larger momentum, which is not necessarily the largest object, determines the direction the objects continue in after the impact.

Fact number 4:  The black smoke from the WTC does NOT prove there was an oxygen-starved fire. As we see herel, large fires involving plastics, or any other petroleum-based product, for that matter, which there were probably a lot of in the WTC,  will produce large amounts of black smoke.  There are also some pictures of outdoor fires producing black smoke here. Let’s not forget that the burning oil fields in Iraq in ’91 produced plenty of black smoke,and they were also OUTDOORS.  Hint: Outdoor fires are NOT going to have a problem with oxygen deprivation as the earth’s atmosphere is approximately ¼ oxygen.  This also means that the WTC fires had a ready-made source of oxygen due to the big, gaping holes in their sides.

I will continue the real-world physics lesson in future articles to counteract the “truthers” constant use of cartoon physics. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go see if I can walk unsupported in midair  as long as I don’t look down.

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Posted February 16, 2010 by Victor Chabala in Real 9/11 Facts

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