Earlier in November, Europhysics News released its first issue since the publication of “15 years later: On the physics of high-rise building collapses,” which has now been viewed nearly 350,000 times since its release — and which even caused the magazine’s server to break down at one point.
On page 43 is a startling and extraordinary letter to the editor by a former employee of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), Peter Michael Ketcham, who worked at NIST from 1997 until 2011.
In a letter to the editor, the former NIST employee speaks out about the report NIST issued regarding the collapse of the World Trade Center towers. That letter is below.
I was a member of the NIST technical staff during the period 1997-2011. I initially joined the High Performance Systems and Services Division and later became a member of what was, at the time, the Mathematical and Computational Sciences Division of the Information Technology Laboratory.
My fellow NIST employees were among the finest and most intelligent people with whom I have ever worked.
I did not contribute to the NIST WTC investigation or reports. But in August of this year, I began to read some of those reports. As I then watched several documentaries challenging the findings of the NIST investigation, I quickly became furious. First, I was furious with myself. How could I have worked at NIST all those years and not have noticed this before? Second, I was furious with NIST.
The NIST I knew was intellectually open, non-defensive, and willing to consider competing explanations.
The more I investigated, the more apparent it became that NIST had reached a predetermined conclusion by ignoring, dismissing, and denying the evidence. Among the most egregious examples is the explanation for the collapse of WTC 7 as an elaborate sequence of unlikely events culminating in the almost symmetrical total collapse of a steel-frame building into its own footprint at free-fall acceleration.