oxidation vs. reduction
Recently, I burned some steel wool live on tv (local Danish network) to challenge the claims of Harrit et al. and Harrit responded by e-mail with what I shall translate here:
"The experiment done by Steen Svanholm is the opposite reaction of the thermite reaction. He burns iron powder that ignite when the temperature is is high enough. Burning is by definition a reaction with the oxygen in the air. The process that Svanholm demonstrates is:
iron + oxygen produces ironoxide
Within chemistry this type of reaction is called an oxidation.
The particles he points to after the experiment are ironoxide and they are not round.
The thermite reaction is the exact opposite:
Ironoxide + aluminum produces aluminumoxide
Within chemistry this type of reaction is called a reduction.
The particles found in the dust from WTC contains elementary iron.
Many of them also contain aluminum and silicon. This is characteristic to iron-rich spheres produced in the thermite reaction.
Svanholm would have flunked the chemistry exam in high school if he had made a fool of himself in this manner."
What are you guys' opinion about his response?