I was taking a break from writing this morning and googling the Web for articles on centers-of-lift and centers-of-gravity in airplanes when I came across a thought-provoking piece that has nothing at all to do with airplane design. It argues that the WTC collapsed on 9/11 not due to airplane strikes, but to controlled (and planned) demolition timed to occur shortly after the strikes.

Now, I’m not one to buy into conspiracy theories. But the further I read into this article, the more intrigued I became, because as an ex-engineer who used to do quite a bit of structural analysis, I was dumbfounded when I saw the towers fall on 9/11. It just didn’t seem possible that an airliner could bring down a structure that size, much less that two airliners could bring down two towers. Even more amazing to me at the time was that the structures collapsed so neatly into themselves, exhibiting a near-perfect pancaking effect.

I didn’t know until today that there’s an “inside job“ theory postulating that someone, somehow allowed a demolition team to plant explosives in the buildings. It’s incredibly far-fetched, but it does satisfy the engineer in me that says there’s more to the WTC collapse than meets the eye. It’s just loony enough that one wonders if there’s a grain of truth in there somewhere.