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Hindenburg Hydrogen Fire

The theories regarding the destruction of the LZ129 Hindenburg are legion.

Within the past two years a theory proposed in 1997 by Addison Bain -- a former NASA scientist with years of experience working with hydrogen -- has garnered popular attention. Bain's theory indicates the cause of the conflagration was not hydrogen, but rather the doping that covered the Hindenburg's outer cover.

The Bain Incendiary-Paint Theory (IPT) theory has its proponents. But there are others who, after examining Bain's theory in detail, find it to be fatally flawed and refute its underlying principles.

Professor Alexander J. Dessler -- presently Adjunct Professor of Atmospheric Science at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas -- has examined Bain's IPT critically and herein presents his findings:

A. J. Dessler
The Hindenburg Hydrogen Fire: Fatal Flaws in the Addison Bain Incendiary-Paint Theory

(3 June 2004: 480kb pdf file, 21 pages)

The following paper complements Dessler's paper.  New material is added with additional conclusions - mainly recent experimental tests and results.  Each of the papers include material not found in the other.

A. J. Dessler, D.E. Overs, W.H. Appleby
The Hindenburg Fire: Hydrogen or  Incendiary Paint?
(12 January 2005: 453kb pdf file, 11 pages)

About the Author: Professor Alexander J. Dessler (2006)

BS Physics: Caltech
PhD Physics: Duke University
7 years in Space Physics Research at Lockheed Missile and Space Co.
26 years at Rice University as Professor of Space Physics and Astronomy (includes 15 years as Dept. Chair)
4 years at NASA Marshall Space Flight Center as Director of Space Science Laboratory
13 years at University of Arizona, Lunar and Planetary Laboratory as Sr. Research Scientist
Presently, Adjunct Professor of Atmospheric Science at Texas A&M University in College Station, Texas

About the Author: Donald E. Overs (2005)

Registered Professional Engineer
BME Mechanical Engineering: University of Akron
MSE Mechanical Engineering: University of Akron
48 years: Commercial Balloon Pilot, gas and hot air
54 years: Private Airplane Pilot, Single engine land and sea
12 years (1944 - 1964) in airship construction, assembly, engineering, and tool design at Goodyear Aerospace Corp.
29 years in naval nuclear engineering design, installations,servicing, and research at Bettis Atomic Power Laboratory
Presently, Retired Sr. Engineer, Westinghouse Electric Corp.

About the Author: William H. Appleby (2005)

BS Biology and Psychology
AS Mathematics and Science
AAS Computer Programming
Network and Database Administration
Statistical Researcher
Lab Technician Biology / Psychology
US Army & National Guard Warrant Officer
    Helicopter Functional Test Pilot & Aircraft Maintenance Warrant Officer
Ground Crew Hot Air Balloons and Lighter Than Air Enthusiast

Hindenburg & the Hydrogen Controversy:

Airship Hindenburg: Experimental study of the involvement of the outer covering paint (dope) in the disastrous final fire
(W. H. Appleby; 17 December 2004)

Hindenburg & Hydrogen (Australian Broadcasting Corporation -- Great Moments In Science)

The Hindenburg Disaster: A Compelling Theory of Probable Cause and Effect

The Hindenburg Hydrogen Fire: Fatal Flaws in the Addison Bain Incendiary-Paint Theory
(A. J. Dessler; 3 June 2004: 480kb pdf file, 21 pages)

The Hindenburg Fire: Hydrogen or  Incendiary Paint?
(A. J. Dessler, D.E. Overs, W.H. Appleby; 12 January 2005: 453kb pdf file, 11 pages)

The Hindenburg: Was hydrogen really to blame?

Hydrogen (DOE: use search feature)

Hydrogen and the Hindenburg

Hydrogen didn't cause the Hindenburg fire

Hydrogen exonerated in Hindenburg disaster

Hindenburg: Final Moments (Real Audio Files)

Herbert Morrison, recorded 6 May 1937 (7:19 excerpt of the 40 minute recording)

NPR Sounds of the Century: Commentary

Spanish commentary with video

Hindenburg: FBI Findings

The FBI has released 337 of 363 pages of memos and reports (in four parts of PDFs) concerning the LZ 129 accident. There are lots of sinister-looking partially blacked-out documents for conspiracy theorists to ponder! Part 3 of the PDFs does contain an Air Commerce Bulletin from Aug 15, 1937 which includes a fairly detailed report of the accident, and suggests possible causes.

FBI: http://foia.fbi.gov/hindburg.htm

 
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This site was created, written, and is maintained by John Dziadecki 1995-2012. The information contained in this page is intended for educational purposes only. Images and quotes not the author's remain in the copyright of the originator. Additions and corrections are welcomed! Please send comments, suggestions and possible links to: John.Dziadecki@colorado.edu.

For more lighter-than-air information, please visit the AIRSHIP website. Thank you.