The Nizkor Project: Remembering the Holocaust (Shoah)

Dan Gannon's Diesel Lies: a UseNet Response

[UseNet headers deleted]

Over the weekend I looked up one of the references cited in the recent Gannon net-wide post:

From _The Journal of Historical Review_, Vol. 5, Number 1 (Spring 1984): The Diesel Gas Chambers:
Myth Within A Myth
(Paper presented to the 1983 International Revisionist Conference)

Specifically the following reference

"20. Elliot and Davis, "Composition of Diesel Exhaust Gas," SAE Quarterly Transactions Vol. 4, No. 3 (July 1950), pp. 345-46 -- discussion by E.W. Landen. [and] 21. Ibid, p. 333."

Now, interestingly enough, the only uses of this reference in the entire "article" are as follows:

[Two graphs captioned, "Figure 4: Liquid and solid components of Diesel smoke.^20" (For the graphs, see image file FIGURE4.GIF, or see the source cited in footnote 20 at the end of this article.)]


[Graph captioned, "Figure 5: Carbon monoxide emissions from undivided chamber Diesel engines.^21 The heavy vertical line at a fuel:air ratio of 0.055 has been added by the author." (For the graph, see image file FIGURE5.GIF, or see the source cited in footnote 21 at the end of this article.)]

After looking at the reference in question it is unclear to me just what graphs this is supposed to refer to in the original article as there are four different figures on page 333. I did find some very interesting material in the article but probably not what the deniers had in mind.

Berg would have us believe that a diesel engine that produces any free carbon is in some sort of critical danger of destroying itself. He suggests as much in the following paragraph:

Diesel smoke contains a liquid phase and a solid phase. The liquid phase generally gets blown out of the engine with the exhaust and, therefore, does no harm to the engine. But if enough solid material is also produced, and rapidly enough, some of that material will accumulate in the cylinders where in just a few minutes it can severely damage the piston rings and valves and cause the engine to simply self-destruct and stop. As the graph shows, the amount of solids produced by the engines increases dramatically just beyond a fuel/air ratio of 0.055. For this reason, manufacturers as a rule equip the fuel injection pumps with stops so that the engines can only operate below 0.055 or 0.050.

Anyone who has seen an old diesel car on the road belching smoke from its exhaust knows that even in this condition such cars can go on for years. Let's put this bit of nonsense aside and just accept it as a fact for the sake of argument. Berg then arbitrarily places a limit on the fuel-air ratio of 0.055 as the "safe" operating limit for diesel engines, lest they self destruct. It is true that if enough solid exhaust material (i.e. free carbon) is produced fast enough that damage to the engine can result. What Berg doesn't say is what constitutes enough or fast enough. In figure 6 of the original reference we see that at a fuel-air ratio of 0.055 the unburned carbon makes up 0.0001% of the exhaust by volume. This volume is substantially the same from a fuel-air ratio of approx. 0.01 up to 0.055. Why then the cutoff at the fuel-air ratio of 0.055 for "safe operation"? It certainly isn't clear from Berg's article why he considers this the cut-off point and the original reference makes no mention of any of the diesel engines they tested (up to fuel-air ratios of 0.09) self-destructing.

What Berg does not mention is that in figure 6 of the original reference the percent by volume of free carbon in the exhaust only reaches 0.0002% at a fuel-air ratio of approximately 0.065. So if 0.0001% is perfectly safe then it might be reasonable to assume 0.0002% could only reduce the operating life of the engine by some finite amount. Certainly an engine running with 0.0002% free carbon in its exhuast could run many hours without breaking down and, I would argue, with proper maintenance could last for years.

O.K., Berg would still have us believe that this is well below the fuel-air ratio at which a diesel engine can produce his (Berg's) requirement of 0.8% CO (by volume) in the exhaust to kill in half an hour. Figure 3 on page 333 of the original reference might tend to bear out this contention, showing as it does that neither a 44 Bhp (british horse power) diesel or a 70 Bhp diesel can produce much more than about 0.2% CO at a fuel-air ratio of 0.065. These are conservative estimates from the graph in Figure 3.

However, if we move our eyes down and to the left on page 333 we see another graph, Figure 4. Figure 4 is a graph of the CO output of a 150 Bhp diesel engine with respect to fuel-air ratio. In it, it is obvious that at a fuel-air ratio 0.065 the 150 Bhp engine produces _over_ 1.0% CO by volume. You read that correctly, 1.0%! Deadly even by Berg's standards. Even at the "magical" fuel-air ratio of 0.055 the 150 Bhp diesel is producing around 0.4% CO, also generally considered quite deadly.

Could this mean that larger diesel engines produce deadlier fumes? There really isn't enough data to extrapolate to the size engines used at Treblinka but the trend toward increasing CO emissions with an increase in engine power output is certainly clear in the 44Bhp to 150 Bhp range. I don't see how an even larger engine would be safer than the 150Bhp tested but perhaps Gannon can enlighten us.

I repost the following essay for the benefit of those who missed it the first time, and for certain Holocaustomaniacs who need to LEARN HOW TO READ ACCURATELY AND STOP LYING.

Perhaps Berg should learn how to thoroughly read his references, eh?

-Dan Gannon
-- Public Access User --- Not affiliated with TECHbooks
Public Access UNIX and Internet at (503) 220-0636 (1200/2400, N81)

-- Scott

The original plaintext version of this file is available via ftp.

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