atomic_fungus (atomic_fungus) wrote,

#3811: Pressure cooker bombs

AoSHQ has a story saying the things were made out of 6-quart pressure cookers.

XKCD "What if": "Am I right to be afraid of pressure cookers? What's the worst thing that can happen if you misuse a pressure cooker...?"


Ann Barnhardt--DO NOT CLICK IF YOU'RE SQUEAMISH--has, for the moment, a gruesome picture of a bombing victim being hauled from the scene in a wheelchair, his left foot gone and most of his left shin bone exposed to air. It's hard to see how even the most gifted surgeon could repair the man's lower leg; in all probability he's going to lose everything just below the knee. You can't really see what happened to his right leg, but it looks as if it was completely severed just above the knee.

Boortz talks about the bombing. He notes that this is similar to Weathermen bombings in the 1970s, perpetrated by Bill Ayers et alii.

The last news report I saw said the Boston PD had found three unexploded devices, for a total of five bombs. It would have been worse but for the incompetence of the people who built the bombs.

American Airlines' entire fleet grounded due to "computer glitch", probably not related.

So, from the first link, here's what we think we know: the bombs were made using black powder, and put in pressure cookers to provide containment. Black powder won't explode on its own unless you use a lot of it, and even then you're better off containing it. It's a deflagrating explosive, meaning it merely burns very quickly and generates a lot of gas in the process. This is why it's good for propelling bullets and/or model rockets, but as soon as we had anything better (eg nitroglycerin, TNT, Semtex, C4, etc) we stopped using it for mining or other tasks requiring an explosion. (Hint: you cannot build a nuclear bomb with gunpowder as the triggering explosive; it's not fast enough. And $5 says someone, somewhere, wrote a "steampunk" SF story in which someone was building a nuclear bomb using gunpowder. *sigh*)

But if you take a pressure cooker, fill it with gunpowder, nails, and ball bearings, put the lid on, and set it off--whew. It's going to be nasty if that thing goes off in the middle of an unsuspecting crowd.

So it's an IED, built in exactly the same fashion as IEDs from the middle east. It's a terrorist weapon, used to perpetrate a terror attack; and because they were built by a terrorists, three of the five bombs failed to go off...which is the only thing that prevented a much, much greater body count.

Two bombs about 100 yards apart--that was meant to herd people into the middle, and I'd bet $1 the three unexploded bombs were between the initial two explosions, and if they'd gone off--

* * *

This is why the media refuses to cover Kermit Gosnell's trial for murdering babies. Because it exposes the reality of abortion-as-contraception:
This is what happens in the case of unrestricted late-term abortion:

a) If a woman wants her baby, he is her precious newborn son, a patient of the hospital, and even if prematurely delivered he will receive humane medical care.

b) If the woman does not want her baby, cut his head off and toss the body in the bin with the others.

Note that the difference between a) and b) is merely the emotional whim of one parent. This is what distinguishes this killing as 'abortion' and not infanticide, to the extremist end of the pro-choice crowd.

On the lady's word, that which would otherwise be considered a child, lives or dies.
This is a debate that pro-abortion people do not want to have, for one important reason: they will lose. They'll lose, and they know they will lose, so the best thing to do is to treat the inevitable horror stories as nonevents: "It's just a local murder story." Yep, just a black man killing brown babies, nothing to look at here, because a woman's right to choose is too important for us to worry about a few brown babies more or less in the world. There are plenty of them anyway and if we have to lose a few people in the process of furthering the cause, well, it's just the cost of doing business!

It's no accident that leftists are the ones who are most stridently pro-abortion.

* * *

Meanwhile, Obama's disdain for England continues. He's not even sending an official representative to Margaret Thatcher's funeral. What an anus the Arrogant-Cuss-In-Chief is.

And "Ding Dong the Witch is Dead" is #2 on the charts in England, because leftists never miss a chance to dance on the graves of people they hate:
If the American media ever reported all the left's obnoxious, crude, hateful behavior, the public might not have the sense that they're the "easygoing, flexible ones." Fortunately for the left, this will never happen.
It will never happen because the press itself is also heavily leftist.

* * *

"So the [diehard warmistas], the bitter-enders, the one who've gotten easy undergraduate pootie-tang for 20 years based on their bullshit models, are now scrambling for a paradigm in which bullshit is actually sort of scientifically heroic." Because global warming is not man-made, because we've gone 15-17 years with CO2 rising like crazy but without a concomitant rise in atmospheric temperature, because reality stubbornly refuses to align with their junk science predictions, now the warmistas are trying to convince us that their models are still right and require only modest tinkering to fix.

Quoth Ace:
Note how arrogant they were before when they were making predictions--overwhelming consensus, the science is settled, "global warming deniers," etc.--and how modest they appear now. Now everything's all about "unknown factors we don't yet understand" or "perhaps we overestimated the actual warming factor of CO2."
Emphasis in original.

His second link cuts right to the chase, reducing the issue to three salient points:
1. All of the scary global warming scenarios are based on computer models.

2. None of the models work.

3. There is and has been no scientific consensus.
#2 is the most important part: NONE OF THE MODELS WORK.

* * *

Saturn V first stage engines are being resurrected. NASA's got someone doing the right thing, finally.

The F-1B engine does away with the complicated regenerative cooling system of the original engine, whcih was complex to manufacture, in favor of a much simpler two-layer nozzle design that still incorporates regenerative cooling while featuring a vastly reduced parts count.

This is a lot smarter than building entirely new engines from scratch.

* * *

We have one of North Korea's expended rockets and we think it means that NK can loft a nuclear warhead as far as the United States. Meanwhile Son of Gargoyle continues to rattle his saber, ever louder. I have to wonder if he's not privately asking himself, "Hey, this always worked when Dad did it. WTF?"

* * *

Put me in the "vaporized" column. Underground nuclear test ended up propelling a 4-foot manhole cover at about 41 miles per second, briefly.

...the post does not say what year this happened, only implying that it happened before the Sputnik launch in 1957. Film running at 160 frames per second show the manhole cover there in one frame, and entirely gone in the next; the poster's calculations say that means it had to move at 41 miles per second, which is almost six times escape velocity.

But consider how much acceleration is required: going from zero to 41 miles per second is some 6,765 gravities of acceleration if you do it in one second; doing it in 1/160th of a second requires over a million gravities of acceleration.

There's no material I can think of that can withstand that sort of acceleration.

So what do I think happened? Under that sort of acceleration, the manhole cover was crushed to powder: it just shattered into tiny grains of iron dust, which may have then further oxidized and vaporized as the "exhaust" from the detonation exited the hole. I don't think it even made it very far off the ground.

Sorry, guys.

* * *

Plenty of "April showers" here. Last night I had to go outside three times to fiddle with the window well pump, to get it to shut off. Sometime soon I must find the post hole digger (or borrow Og's) and clean the thing out so I can stop mucking about with it every time we get more than a sprinkling of rain.

I'm caught in the old hillbilly paradox: when it's not raining, the thing doesn't present a problem, and when it's raining, I can't fix it. *sigh*

I got a little motorcycle ride in yesterday, though; I had some errands to run and the motorcycle seemed like the best way to do them. That's what I got it for. (Well, that, and because it's fun. Dual-purpose FTW.) Then I was home and realized I'd forgotten to pick up bread at the store, so I took off again and got rained on, a little bit.

On the plus side we avoided getting any of the snow that was predicted. It's April; I don't want any more snow this year, at least not before November. Damn it.

* * *

For some reason, IrfanView no longer plays Flash files with sound. I checked the sound settings and it wasn't that, so I had no f-ing clue what's wrong.

And what turned out to be the trouble?

Well, sometime in the not-so-distant past, I apparently set the volume on an MP3 to "off" when it was playing via IrfanView, and apparently that setting somehow screws up the volume settings for all file types, even when they don't display a volume slider.

Tell me: why the everlasting fuck does an image display and manipulation program have to play MP3 files? Argh etc.

Whatev; now I can watch the old "Homestar Runner" flash files again. Whee!

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