Where is the World Trade Center Rubble?

wtc rubble 1

The 2nd article in a series debunking certain aspects of the 9/11 conspiracy theories. In this one I’ve been asked to account for the whereabouts of the rubble of the World Trade Centre towers because, apparently, it all disappeared!

Some “truthers” claim that some sort of space weapon (possibly alien technology) was used to disintegrate the buildings, this appealing theory explains the collapse of the towers and the disappearance of the rubble in one easy step!

Other “truthers” don’t know how they disintegrated the rubble, but they’re certain that it was done “somehow”.

My Conclusion

wtc rubble overview

I’ve investigated this and concluded that there isn’t any rubble missing. The evidence that I believe supports this conclusion is detailed in the rest of this article.

I believe the reason that some people think the rubble has disappeared is that:

  • They haven’t had a good look at the photos available.
  • There wasn’t much “rubble” in the building to start off with – it had a light-weight construction.
  • A lot of it collapsed into the 6 basement floors of the towers, so you can’t see it.
  • They’re unaware that 300,000 tonnes of scrap steel was removed and recycled.

These buildings had hardly any concrete in them. All of the concrete in a tower could fit into the bottom 4 levels of the basement. A lot of it was also spread as dust across a wide area. (More detailed calculations in the section further down.)

The Photographic Evidence

wtc rubble map

One of the main points of contention is what happened to all the metal beams in the building, especially those in the external skin.

If you took off the outer skin of one of the towers, and laid it out flat it, would cover an area 324 metres by 324 metres (63.4m x 419m x 4). Since there were two towers then the area you’d expect to be covered is represented by the two yellow squares in the diagram on the right. The overlapping area in the middle would have to be covered by two layers of outer skin. Of course, you’re not going to get it all falling nicely like that, but this is a good exercise to do, so that you have an idea of how much stuff to expect.

Here are some nice large photos so you can have a good look at the rubble and make up your own mind.

Remember, there’s also rubble squashed into the six basement levels!

wtc rubble 5

wtc rubble 3

wtc rubble 4

wtc rubble 6

wtc rubble 4

wtc rubble 7

wtc rubble 1 wtc rubble 2

The next 4 photos were taken on 23rd September, after 12 days of cleaning up. The first is an overview of the area and then the next three are closeups of the areas covered by the 3 buildings WTC 4, WTC 5 and WTC 6.

wtc rubble 7

rubble of wtc6

rubble of wtc5

rubble of wtc4

Why isn’t there much rubble?

wtc floor construction

The World Trade Center towers used hardly any concrete. The outer walls had no concrete at all. And the floors only had a 10 centimeter thin layer of lightweight concrete. There where no columns throughout the floors either. The central core also relied predominantly on the metal beams for its strength. The concrete in the floor of the central core column area was only an average of 15 centimeters thick.

The Metal bars under each floor were also very thin and lightweight. Therefore there was not much to prevent all the debris squashing very flat.

How much concrete should there be?

Here I’ll work out the volume of the concrete that should be in the rubble.

wtc floor plan dimension

There are a total of 116 floors (110 floors above ground and plus 6 basement levels).

Each floor has two areas: 1) the open plan office and 2) the central core containing the lifts.

Area of the entire floor is: 63.4m x 63.4 = 4020 m2
Area of the central core is: 26.8 x 51.2 = 1372 m2
Open plan office area is: 4020 – 1372 = 2648 m2

The central core had lots of lift shafts so only half the floor had concrete 1372 / 2 = 686 m2
I haven’t seen anything describing the concrete in the walls of the central core and lift shafts. They only mention the 49 steel beams for strength, so there mustn’t have been that much concrete. However, I’ll err on the side of caution and assume that there are quite a few concrete walls in there, anyway.
Two long walls: 2 x 51.2 x 3.8 = 391 m2
Ten short walls: 10 x 26.8 x 3.8 = 1018 m2
Total wall area in central core: 391 + 1018 = 1409 m2

Total volume of concrete per floor is:
(2648 x 0.1) + (686 x 0.15) + ( 1409 x 0.1 ) = 508.6 m3

Total volume for each tower is:
116 x 508.6 = 58,997.6 m3

Each level has a volume of:
63.4 x 63.4 x 3.8 = 15274 m3
which means that all the concrete can fit in the basement in (58,997.6 / 15274 ) = 3.8 levels. I’m not saying that it is all in the basement, but the basement is full of rubble.

Additionally, some of the concrete was turned to powder and spread throughout the the neighborhood.

Floor to Wall joints

The picture below shows how flimsily walls where connected to floors. The theory is that as the fire heated the metal floor and walls, they expanded and warped, until eventually the joint between the floor and the wall failed and the floor collapsed onto the floor below – setting in motion a chain reaction.

wall joint

More Information

300,000 tonnes of scrap metal was created by the wtc collapse, some was shipped to China for recycling and some was recycled in New Jersey.

The official report of the investigation into why the towers collapsed (by National Institute of Standards and Technology.

Wikipedia article about the construction of the World Trade Center

What do you think?

So what’s your conclusion? Did the aliens zap the rubble with their ray gun to make it disappear? Or was it all there in the basement and on the ground? Let me know what you think!

Have I missed something? Or made a mistake? Please let me know in the comments below.

If you liked this then please follow us on Facebook (in the right column) so I can let you know whenever I put a new article out. (Not that often.)

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