COLUMN 9AA - WARPED BY THE LEFT WING
Adam Larson / Caustic Logic
The Frustrating Fraud
September 10 2007
last updated 9/11 early am
In assessing the outer column damage upon impact, I had been hazy for a while on the status of column 9aa (aa meaning the outermost position on a column line). It would have been two columns over to the left (north) of the collapsed portion, and officially impacted by Flight 77’s left wing but left intact. In error I had included it as part of the columns-removed area, which I had taken as too wide. This has now been updated. Although I was focused on the right-hand side and didn’t see or wonder about this non-controversial support. It was usually listed as intact though deformed and impaired, and no-planers hadn't made any noises about it I've heard. But finally I have looked into it and found a few early (pre-shoring) photos that show it – barely. Column line 9 is roughly highlighted in each of the below to help locate it
By coincidence, these four shots rotate, zoom out, and clear-up if looked at in sequence. The first, least clear shot is pre-collapse, less than 20 min after impact, seen close and from the left and obscured by smoke. The second view is further out, just after the collapse, and somewhat clearer. The third view is off to the right from behind the smashed generator, with all up-front fire extinguished, and the final view is a long shot from the far right. Note how the curvature of the columns seems to shift with perspective – it bends to the left when seen from the left, appears straight seen straight-on, and curves to the right when seen from that side. This shape consistently indicates in inward bend.
Column 9 is also visible in figure 9 from FEMA’s Shoring Report (above), again seen from the right, post-collapse, post-fire, but pre-shoring. It’s the “damaged column,” one of the many that necessitated the bracing that report documented. Other photos of column 9 in the report, once the wood went up, are taken head-on and show no evident lateral curve. Figure 16 (left) shows the first of the supports being finished the night after the attack, with the space to the right still left hanging.
The close-up photo used in the American Society of Civil Engineers’s 2002 Pentagon Building Performance Report shows a column displaying “triple curvature” (shown from the right). Besides three remnants of its original square-sided casing, the angular concrete is gone, the column “stripped to spiral reinforcements.”
Regarding the evident curve, its clear inward orientation is seen elsewhere in the building with other columns, in what appears to be a bowing by Boeing. The fulcrum of appears to be in its upper portion, about 2/3 of the way up from the foundation. This is presumably the impact point of any type of wing in the area. The ASCE’s report listed the column as “5 to 6 inches out of plumb.” By the photo below, showing the column and its bend in its stabilization period environs, it seems visibly at least that misaligned at the top end in particular, further indicating a high impact.
But this graphic used in the ASCE’s report seems to disagree, with the left engine centered just to right of column 11aa with columns 10, 9, and 8aa visible to left. In addition to there being no evidence of the left engine entering well below ground level as shown, the wing crosses low on column 9 in this mock-up, almost certainly too low to have created the bend seen above. It might seem presumptuous of me to question the ASCE's graphic placement, but it seems warranted by this evidence to venture that we have an inaccurate graphic here.
They seem to have placed the right wing correctly given the building damage at that location, but neither the left wing or engine seem marked properly. Perhaps they were trying to avoid an overly-complex explanation as to how the wings could impact at differing angles from each other, and just dropped on an intact 757's profile stretched to account for the angular impact. This is about the same reason I've done the same and am still not explicitly reconciling the wing discrepancy here. But the key to seeing how this is possible is to keep in mind that the plane impacted at such an angle that the right wing/engine and much of the fuselage were scattered inside the building by the time the left wing or tailfin ever touched the facade or outer columns. I intend to post this theory in the near future, but for now, I propose a correction like this:
My green rotation, compared to the ASCE's in red, accounts better for both the column warping seen here and for the lack of an engine burrowed six feet under the floor slab. It does seem the engine was likely low enough to have impacted the building’s foundation, if glancingly, and also possibly just high enough to have cleared the floor. This ambiguity is interesting for another study of Citizens’ Investigative Team's undamaged foundation claims by possibly making their point moot.