Dr. Leroy Hulsey, a distinguished engineering authority presented his team’s preliminary report on the collapse of World Trade Center Building 7. The report is preliminary in the sense that it awaits peer-review, that is, examination by other experts. The team’s research is more extensive than the modeling provided by NIST and includes a thorough examination of NIST’s approach. Dr. Hulsey’s team concludes that Building 7 did not come down due to fire.
Here is his presentation.
Being a Georgia Tech graduate I can follow the gist of Dr. Hulsey’s presentation. It is a difficult explanation to follow as engineering science is challenging to explain. Moreover, engineers are accustomed to talking to other engineers, not to the general public. At the Georgia Tech of my day, and perhaps still, the administration was determined to produce articulate engineers. Our English courses were writing courses. The English Department took the position that just as one engineering mistake could cause a bridge or building to fail, one spelling or grammatical mistake produced the grade of F on the assignment. (Yes, I know, with all of my typos how did I pass? The answer is that our papers were hand written.) We were also encouraged to join Toastmasters so that we would be capable of standing up before an audience and making a presentation. What I am saying is that Dr. Hulsey is in the difficult position of having to address an audience consisting of professionals and non-professionals, and he probably has limited experience in addressing non-professionals.
Nevertheless, it is possible to grasp that the NIST simulation of the collapse ignored three structural elements that actually existed in the building, and the presence of these structural…