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(9News (Australia))   The science behind Beirut's massive explosion that leveled a good portion of the city (warning: graphic images)   (9news.com.au) divider line
    More: Scary, Ammonia, Nitrogen, AP Photo, Ammonium nitrate, Beirut, Lebanon, Oklahoma City bombing, Professor  
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7851 clicks; posted to Main » on 05 Aug 2020 at 9:05 AM (12 weeks ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook



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2020-08-05 11:42:28 AM  

Gleeman: [Youtube-video https://www.youtube.com/embed/Sv8tS4_d​Rrk]

There's your earth shattering kaboom.


The only thing you could possibly ask for in addition would be two of these people, skimming by in the water at the time:

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 11:46:06 AM  

TheCubsFan: Abe Vigoda's Ghost: Discordulator: You move it, truck by truck, outside the city or to a quarry. It is safe to transport, and much less dangerous when not kept in huge amounts.

[Fark user image 700x467]
[Fark user image 700x466]

Two different trucks don't agree with your assessment.

I don't see any trucks.


Don't see any drivers either. But they're around...
 
2020-08-05 11:47:17 AM  
2020: Beirut gets a reminder the explosive fertilizer was still there.

Source

[Fark user image 425x499]


That bagged AN is the proper blasting nitro prill that is used for blasting in mines not the piss weak AN that is used for agricultural purposes.

To turn it into ANFO the mixing rate is pretty simple. For every 5 kilos of AN you add 1 beer can of diesel.
 
2020-08-05 11:50:33 AM  

PvtStash: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.


Time is the answer, time and slow evolution driven mostly by market costs is what you did not take into account for  your POV on the situaiotn.

Why is a port where it is?
due to natural geological feat5ures most of the time, not an arbitrary thing we can build just anywhere, especially the more back in time we go.

And why are busy population centered located where they are?
Generally due to proximity convince to features that provide work or food, like ports and airports and natural resource centers.

And while it is common for airports to be built outside of city population centers, eventually a lot of the cities have grown out to where the airports were built and now many of the major airports of thew world have dense population centers near them and under heavy air traffic lanes.

While ports, you know the boats that won't fall out the sky onto your house. Those did not have the same considerations applied to their locations. And practically all the ports of the world came into existence long before the airports. So not nearly as much city and urban planning and design went into many of them.

The time flow is, ports go where ports can go, and cities just grow up around them over time. Most major ports of the world have been where they are for generations now.

The way you describe "why did they put it there in the middle of the city" is basically irrational and irrelevant a question to ask, as it assume wrongly the entire city and port were all planned at once together in a coherent way, rather than slowly wound up that way over many many many decades or hundreds of years with no single plan being carried out over many generations.


I liked how someone put the time perspective in one of the threads yesterday, something like: When the "port goes here, commerce goes here" decisions were being made in Beirut, Rome was the major global superpower.
 
2020-08-05 11:54:10 AM  

siege_bong: 2020: Beirut gets a reminder the explosive fertilizer was still there.

Source

[Fark user image 425x499]

That bagged AN is the proper blasting nitro prill that is used for blasting in mines not the piss weak AN that is used for agricultural purposes.

To turn it into ANFO the mixing rate is pretty simple. For every 5 kilos of AN you add 1 beer can of diesel.


Budweiser or Fosters?
 
2020-08-05 11:57:39 AM  
Found on the Reddits, don't know if accurate:

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 12:05:59 PM  

Geotpf: It being on fire, however, was.


64.media.tumblr.comView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 12:07:40 PM  
"The size of Lebanon's massive explosion that killed dozens of people was likely exacerbated by the presence of almost 3,000 tonnes of a chemical commonly used as garden fertiliser."

The article make is sound as if the explosive chemicals were not the cause of the explosion, i.e. something/someone set off an explosion.  Seems to be going out of the way to emphasize the stability of ammonium nitrate and that it had been stored for many years.
 
2020-08-05 12:08:35 PM  

Abe Vigoda's Ghost: Discordulator: You move it, truck by truck, outside the city or to a quarry. It is safe to transport, and much less dangerous when not kept in huge amounts.

[Fark user image image 700x467]
[Fark user image image 700x466]

Two different trucks don't agree with your assessment.


Okay, definitely not 100% safe.

Still, this was far less destructive than what happened, and is even less likely to happen if the trucks are thoroughly inspected beforehand due to the danger.
 
2020-08-05 12:14:02 PM  
If only they had a good maritime lawyer

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 12:27:24 PM  

iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

See also: West, Texas

[Fark user image 500x332]


2000 feet is the perimiter we use in the USAF for priority A events, too.
Hardly safe, but WTF, a manual has to have values in it. Even if they are worthless in human life.
 
2020-08-05 1:19:41 PM  

xanadian: Associate Professor Stewart Walker from the school of Forensic, Environmental and Analytical Chemistry at Flinders University said ammonium nitrate is not flammable but will "support a fire by providing oxygen to burn".

stupid Flinders...


Hufflepuffs are excellent Finders.
 
2020-08-05 1:23:55 PM  

iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

See also: West, Texas

[Fark user image 500x332]


Was hoping somebody had brought this up already.
 
2020-08-05 1:33:10 PM  

iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....
This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.
See also: West, Texas
[Fark user image 500x332]


Fark, people, I'm sure it blew up in the service of capitalism. This is all good, remember? You adore capitalism, you use it every day to get cool things for yourself.

Just a little collateral damage. You have to create a few waste zones for capitalism.

Fark user imageView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 1:50:16 PM  
Trump was right! someone is behind the attacks!

Arrest Science Immediately!
 
2020-08-05 1:55:42 PM  

GRCooper: Found on the Reddits, don't know if accurate:

[Fark user image 425x295]


Brenham should be on that list somewhere...
 
2020-08-05 1:58:06 PM  

Gleeman: [iFrame https://www.youtube.com/embed/Sv8tS4_d​Rrk?autoplay=1&widget_referrer=https%3​A%2F%2Fwww.fark.com&start=0&enablejsap​i=1&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.fark.com&​widgetid=1]

There's your earth shattering kaboom.


OMG! That's awful.

/The whole thing is in portrait mode
 
2020-08-05 2:01:02 PM  

akya: Gleeman: [iFrame https://www.youtube.com/embed/Sv8tS4_d​Rrk?autoplay=1&widget_referrer=https%3​A%2F%2Fwww.fark.com&start=0&enablejsap​i=1&origin=https%3A%2F%2Fwww.fark.com&​widgetid=1]

There's your earth shattering kaboom.

OMG! That's awful.

/The whole thing is most of the videos are in portrait mode


FTFM
 
2020-08-05 2:02:42 PM  

Xythero: [Fark user image 850x1203]


That building that is still standing must be made of some incredibly strong material.  It took a 2kt explosion to the face and is still standing.  We should probably look into that for some of our more "vulnerable" buildings locally.
 
2020-08-05 2:04:35 PM  

Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.


JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.



I was going to make a smart remark about Libertarians but you beat me to it.
 
2020-08-05 2:15:40 PM  

Latinwolf: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.


I was going to make a smart remark about Libertarians but you beat me to it.


You mean government incompetence causing untold suffering?
 
2020-08-05 2:34:03 PM  

cryinoutloud: iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....
This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.
See also: West, Texas
[Fark user image 500x332]

Fark, people, I'm sure it blew up in the service of capitalism. This is all good, remember? You adore capitalism, you use it every day to get cool things for yourself.

Just a little collateral damage. You have to create a few waste zones for capitalism.

[Fark user image 789x110]


media.giphy.comView Full Size
 
2020-08-05 2:47:38 PM  

akya: Trump was right! someone is behind the attacks!

Arrest Science Immediately!


Show me where it wasn't an attack Einstein. Stupid Farker.
 
2020-08-05 2:48:59 PM  

Latinwolf: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

JerryHeisenberg: This story is a libertarian wet dream come to life.


I was going to make a smart remark about Libertarians but you beat me to it.


No you weren't.
 
2020-08-05 3:19:27 PM  

Maynard G. Muskievote: I liked how someone put the time perspective in one of the threads yesterday, something like: When the "port goes here, commerce goes here" decisions were being made in Beirut, Rome was the major global superpower.


Again, Phoenicians.  Rome was not even a good collection of mud huts at the time.
 
2020-08-05 5:02:22 PM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


Next to a fireworks warehouse....
 
2020-08-05 5:08:47 PM  

Geotpf: litheandnubile: maybe don't store a bunch of exlosives in a hot place

ever think of that?

hmmmm?

yeah, about that try harder next time

kthxbye

It being hot wasn't really the problem.

It being on fire, however, was.

/I guess it got very hot once it was on fire


The six years it had to absorb moisture from the atmosphere...
 
2020-08-05 6:09:28 PM  

xanadian: Associate Professor Stewart Walker from the school of Forensic, Environmental and Analytical Chemistry at Flinders University said ammonium nitrate is not flammable but will "support a fire by providing oxygen to burn".

stupid Flinders...


I have heard people claim that ammonium nitrate is an explosive in its own right, while Wikipedia claims that it is not, and a fuel must be added.  And yet Wiki also claims that the thermal decomposition of NH4NO3 is exothermic, and explosive above a critical mass.  Anyone with experience in this matter?

The reaction:

NH4NO3 → N2O + 2H2O  (below 300°C)

...makes it look like the ammonia is burning, using the nitrate as an oxidizer.  That sounds like all the ingredients for a self-contained explosive to me.   At higher temperatures, another reaction dominates,

2NH4NO3 → 2N2 + O2 + 4H2O  (above 300°C)

I assume this is even more exothermic because the N2 triple bond is able to re-form.
 
2020-08-05 6:11:12 PM  

Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.


The blast in Oklahoma City used a mixture of NH4NO3 and fuel oil; nitrate to provide the oxidizer, oil to provide the oxidize-ee.
 
2020-08-05 6:25:16 PM  
I'm still sort of in awe that that much ammonium nitrate was being stored in the same warehouse as a bunch of fireworks, very short distance from a grain elevator (also prone to randomly going splodey).
 
2020-08-05 6:44:08 PM  

GRCooper: Found on the Reddits, don't know if accurate:

[Fark user image 425x295]


then you check it for accuracy before you farking post it.
 
2020-08-05 6:47:21 PM  

Flerkenpie070: GRCooper: Found on the Reddits, don't know if accurate:

[Fark user image 425x295]

then you check it for accuracy before you farking post it.


Feel free to ignore me, cupcake.
 
2020-08-05 7:08:16 PM  

GRCooper: siege_bong: 2020: Beirut gets a reminder the explosive fertilizer was still there.

Source

[Fark user image 425x499]

That bagged AN is the proper blasting nitro prill that is used for blasting in mines not the piss weak AN that is used for agricultural purposes.

To turn it into ANFO the mixing rate is pretty simple. For every 5 kilos of AN you add 1 beer can of diesel.

Budweiser or Fosters?


'Merican units like Budweiser don't mix with metric units like kilos.

How do you mix it safely, BTW?
 
2020-08-05 7:17:37 PM  

Private_Citizen: iamskibibitz: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

See also: West, Texas

[Fark user image image 500x332]

Yeah and they were just Making it there. They likely only had small amounts on hand before shipping it out. If that were a warehouse Storing it? That neighborhood would have been erased.


On paper, the West, Texas plant wasn't even making NH4NO3.  According to the paperwork, it was an ammonia factory.  (Going from ammonia to ammonium nitrate requires a whole lot more equipment.)  But maybe that had been true the last time the factory was inspected, back in the 1980's.

Also, the factory was there before the school or the nursing home.  So, in this case it would have been the school and the nursing home that were violating the rules if there were any in Texas, not the factory.
 
2020-08-05 8:01:28 PM  

siege_bong: That bagged AN is the proper blasting nitro prill that is used for blasting in mines not the piss weak AN that is used for agricultural purposes.


Prill is the standard commercial form of AN. Wiki does not mention an alternative form, unless by "piss weak" you mean converting AN into synthetic urea for agricultural use, which I have read about.
 
2020-08-05 9:57:05 PM  

oldweasel: Private_Citizen: NEDM: Private_Citizen: Smoking GNU: Private_Citizen: So, they stored 3000 tons of ammonium nitrate (Oklahoma City was 2 tons) in the center of a city....

This is one of the best arguments I've seen for why we have zoning laws.

The port, not the city center.

[Fark user image 425x590]
The port is in the city center. Houses are just on the other side of the street from the warehouses where they stored 3000 Tons of explosive fertilizer.

/At least when Pepcon blew up it was in the middle of nowhere.

Beirut is an ancient city.  "Zoning laws" don't really come into play here, unless you're suggesting they should have taken time in the middle of their civil war to build an entirely new port separate from the one the city grew around for thousands of years.

I'm suggesting they store explosives in a warehouse AWAY from the city.

But I guess sometimes people need to see a city destroyed to understand why that's important.

See the links above, it's like humans never learn....


Like? Dude/tte, we're f*cking doomed.
 
2020-08-06 11:45:33 AM  

Flerkenpie070: GRCooper: Found on the Reddits, don't know if accurate:

[Fark user image 425x295]

then you check it for accuracy before you farking post it.


Maybe he's a journalist and doesn't have to do any fact checking before sharing information.
 
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