The Ventilation System of Kremas II and III
One of best examples of falsification, manipulation and "holocaust science" given by VT is available in this curious statement, which in itself proves the mental confusion of the pompous "Veritas" (sic!) state of mind:
The VT claims "the enhancements made to the designs of the ventilation system of L-Keller 1 in the spring of 1942" as one of their 100+ “proofs” of the existence of homicidal gas chambers in Birkenau.
VT Response 1
The Negationists elaborate on this allegedly inadequate ventilation system a few lines down:
The ventilation for the corpse undressing room and the morgue in both of the basements of Kremas II and III was about 9-16 exchanges per hour, certainly not any powerful extraction system.
Another hilariously dishonest sentence, rather akin to someone saying that the temperature in Athens and Oslo today is between 9-24 degrees—technically correct but functionally useless, and highly misleading if you happen to be in either Athens or Oslo. It was only L-Keller 1—the room designated by the Negationists as the "morgue"—in which Zyklon B is alleged to have been used to gas people, and hence it is only the ventilation rate of that room which is of relevance. The only possible reason why the Negationist team would see fit to include the undressing room in their consideration of the ventilation is to justify lowballing us with a range rather than a specific figure. If they wanted to express the same information honestly, they would have said that the ventilation rate was 9 exchanges per hour in the undressing room, and 16 in the "morgue". But such a construction would hardly have served their rhetorical purposes, as this contrast is itself of interest, especially when one considers that it reflects a curious revision from the original construction plan. The initial blueprint for a single morgue facility at Birkenau called for L-kellar 1 to have only a deaeration motor with a capacity of 4000 cu m/hr, that would have given L-Kellers 1 and 2 comparable ventilation rates. The revised version ultimately provided L-Kellar 1 (the gas chamber) with an 8000 cu m/hr deration [evacuation] motor, giving it almost twice the deration [evacuation] capacity of L-Keller 2 (the undressing room), adding as well an aeration chimney to L-kellar 1, making this the only room in the building with it's own aeration as well as deration [evacuation] system. These revisions were all made in the spring of 1942, within weeks of the period in which historians of Auschwitz generally agree the decision was made to use Birkenau as a site of mass murder.
"Certainly not any powerful extraction system"? The Negationists simply declare this to be so, and, offering no explanation as to why this would have been inadequate, expect us to take their expertise on the ventilation of gas chambers on faith. But an aeration/deaeration system with a throughput of 8000 m3/hr for a room with a volume of about 500 m3 means that all of the air in L-Keller 1 could be circulated by this air extraction system within 4 minutes. According to the witnesses already cited, the SS ran the ventilation system for about 20 minutes before opening the doors to begin extracting the bodies. In other words, all of the air in the room would have been exchanged already five times."
From where the data provided by the VT has been taken isn't clear. No references to German contemporaneous documents or secondary sources are indicated: only vague statements for an initial construction plan "for deaeration of L-Keller 1" of Krematorium II and Krematorium III, allegedly modified "in the spring of 1942 within weeks of the periods in which historians of Auschwitz generally agree the decision was made to use Birkenau as a site of mass murder" to support this claim.
So, according to VT:
From an initial planned capacity of deaerating (evacuating) of 4000 cubic meters per hour for Leichenkeller 1 (the alleged gas chamber) of Krema II, the Germans provided the supposed gas chamber with an upgraded 8000 cubic meter per hour evacuation motor. With this new powerful system, which gave—according to the VT statement—almost twice the ventilating capability of LK-2 (the undressing-cellar).
Furthermore, the Germans “added as well an aeration chimney to Leichenkeller 1, thus making this the only room in the building with it's own aeration as well as deaeration system."
Therefore a technically perfect instrument to kill human beings was built by the SS…
It seems to us that our Veritas Team "engineers" don't have the foggiest idea what "air exchanges per hour" means. Their thinking is: at 16 exchanges per hour it takes 60 minutes/16 = 4 minutes to clear the room of the lethal gas.
Now, that’s Hilarious!
As chemist Germar Rudolf explains,
All data and propositions given are erroneous and the purest of manipulations by the VT.
An imaginary experiment may perhaps assist in clarifying a somewhat complicated mathematical relationship: you have a bucket filled to the brim with sea water in front of you. You now take a second bucket filled with fresh water and pour it very carefully into the first bucket, allowing the excess flow over the edge. Now the question: when you have emptied the second bucket of fresh water into the first, containing sea water, what is the composition of the water in the first bucket? Pure fresh water? Of course not. It will be a mixture of salt and fresh water.
Rudolf Report: 184.108.40.206.1. Introduction.
In reality, the initial planned system of ventilation of Krematorium II (and therefore for its twin, Krematorium III), are according to Jean Claude Pressac as follows:
(cf. Les Crématoires d'Auschwitz
, CNRS Editions, Paris, p.30 and n.13: ACM [=TCDIK] 502-1-327 letter from Topf firm dated 4 November 1941).
- A blowing ventilator (No. 450) for the B-Keller ( volume of 483 m3: the future Leichenkeller 1) with a capacity of 4,800 cu m/h;
- An aspirating ventilator (drawing air out) (No. 450) for the B-Keller (483m3); with a capacity of 4,800 cu m/h;
- An aspirating ventilator (No. 550) for the L-Keller (966m3: the future Leichenkeller 2) with a capacity of 10,000 cu m/h;
- An aspirating ventilator (No. 550) for the oven room (1.031m3) with a capacity of 10,000 cu m/h;
- An aspirating ventilator (No. 375) with a capacity of 3,000 (300m3) cu /h for the autopsy room.
Therefore, given the volume of the respective rooms, it is possible to calculate the number of air exchanges per hour estimated:
4,800 : 483 = 9.93 exchanges for the B-Keller;
10,000 : 966 = 10.35 exchanges for the L-Keller;
10,000 : 1,031 = 9.69 exchanges for the oven room;
3,000 : 300 = 10 exchanges for the autopsy room.
Continuing from Pressac:
Schultze [Topf engineer] assigned an hourly extraction capacity of 10 cubic meters for each cubic meter in each room to be ventilated. To achieve this, he proposed for the 483 cubic meter B. Keller, which was to be both aerated and deaerated, a double system run by two 2-hp blowers, which could bring 4,800 cubic meters of fresh air into the room each hour and extract 4,000 cubic meters from the room.
Jean-Claude Pressac, with Robert-Jan Van Pelt. "The Machinery of Mass Murder at Auschwitz," in Gutman-Berenbaum Anatomy of Auschwitz Death Camp. (Indianapolis: 1994), p. 201.
So in November of 1941 there was already planned a system for deaerating and aerating the B-Keller (the future Leichenkeller 1, i.e., the “gas chamber”).
Thus, the ridiculous statement of Veritas that "adding as well an aeration chimney to L-Kellar 1, making this the only room in the building with it's own aeration as well as deaeration system" is totally false!
Subsequently, says Pressac:
In mid-March , Bischoff received new calculations from Schultz. After reviewing the original numbers, he had decided that it was better to increase the total capacity of the ventilation system of the new crematorium, now to be built at Birkenau, from 32,600 cubic meters of air per hour to 45,000 per hour. The room most affected by this was the B. Keller, which was to receive a system capable of aerating and deaerating 8,000 instead of 4,800 cubic meters per hour, that is, a 66-percent increase. Bischoff accepted Schultze's new proposal on April 2. He asked Topf to bring the designation on the firm's blueprints into line with the ones drawn up in the camp.  This meant that B. Keller became L. Keller 1 and L. Keller became L. Keller 2. The Topf design was modified accordingly and returned to Auschwitz on May 8. 
 Moscow [TCDIK], 502-1-312, letter Bauleitung April 2, 1942; Oswiecim, BW 11/1, 12.
 Moscow, 502-1-312, letter Topf May 8, 1942."
Jean-Claude Pressac, with Robert-Jan Van Pelt. "The Machinery of Mass Murder at Auschwitz," in Gutman-Berenbaum Anatomy of Auschwitz Death Camp. (Indianapolis: 1994), pp. 210, 232.
Thus, suggests Pressac, the capacity of the ventilators was increased as follows:
Pumping ventilator for the B-Keller: 8,000 m3/h (=16.56 air exchanges per hour); aspirating ventilator for the B-Keller: 8,000 m3/h (= 16.56 air exchanges per hour); aspirating ventilator for the L-Keller: 13,000 m3/h (=13.45 air exchanges per hour); aspirating ventilator for the oven room: 12,000 m3/h (= 11.64 air exchanges per hour); aspirating ventilator for the autopsy room: 4,000 m3/h (= 13.33 air exchanges per hour).
(cf. Pressac, Les Crématoires d'Auschwitz
, op cit. p. 38.)
In reality, the capacity of the ventilators mentioned by Pressac is not certified by any document, so it is only a speculative assertion, without any technical basis and dismissed—as will be shown below—by documentary evidence.
Pressac obviously calculated ventilation performance based on of the power of the motors, and VT, without specifying their source, have manifestly copied these erroneous data, shown in the D59366 Topf plan of 10 March 1942 (Ibid, documents 13-15, np).
Now, it is important to note that contrary to arbitrary and historically unfounded statements of the Veritas Team, these modifications, refer to a period in which the crematory was being planned exclusively for hygienic purposes!
"S'imposa fin octobre 1942 l'idée, somme toute évidente, de transférer l'activité 'gazeuse' des Bunker 1 et 2 dans une pièce de crématoire, équipée d'une ventilation artificielle, comme cela avait été pratiqué en décembre 1941 dans la morgue du crématoire"
"Towards the end of October 1942, the idea occurred, an obvious one when all was said and done, of transferring the 'gassing' activity of Bunkers 1 and 2 into a room of the crematory, equipped with artificial ventilation, as had been practiced in 1941 in the morgue of Crematory I."
Ibid, p. 60.
To phrase it another way,
“At the end of October 1942, the Zentralbauleitung began to consider transfer of the gassing from bunkers 1 and 2 to a room in a crematorium”
Pressac, Jean-Claude, with Robert-Jan Van Pelt, "The Machinery of Mass Murder at Auschwitz," in Gutman-Berenbaum Anatomy of Auschwitz Death Camp. (Indianapolis: 1994), p.223.
Robert-Jan Van Pelt and Debòrah Work seem to suggest December 1942 for this decision: see Auschwitz, 1270 to the Present.
(NY: 1996), p.324.
So this change in the power of motors has nothing to do with any supposed intention to kill human beings, but is only, with any probability, a simple technical modification made because the initial planned power of the ventilation motors was wrong and insufficient to the hygienic necessities of Birkenau.
These hygenic necessities emerged subsequent to November of 1941, and were originally calculated on dimensions of rooms a little more reduced than the effective dimensions of LK1 and LK2.
According to the same French researcher, "Dimensions and volumes of the Krematorium II and III Leichenkeller" on the basis of the plans of the crematories were:
- Leichenkeller 1 measured 30 meters in length, 7 in width and 2.41 in height; therefore, it had an area of 210 m2 and a volume of 506 m3.
- Leichenkeller 2 was 49.49 meters long and 7.93 wide and 2.30 high, so its area was 392.5 m2, and its volume was 902.7 m3
Jean Claude Pressac, Auschwitz: Technique and operations of the gas chambers. (NY: 1989), p. 286.
In the first drawings they are calculated on the wrong basis:
LK1 483 m3,
LK2 866 m3.
Pressac (and VT accordingly) states that Leichenkeller 1 of Crematories II and III was actually equipped with ventilators with a capacity of 8,000 m3/h of air (Crématoires, p. 74 and p. 118), and even mentions the invoice of the ventilation system for Crematory III: invoice No. 729 of 27 March 1943 (Ibid, p. 105, note 184).
But the Topf invoice No. 729 dated 27 March 1943 cited by Pressac mentions that a ventilator with a capacity of 4,800 m3/h was required for the B-Raum, the supposed homicidal gas chamber, and that a ventilator with a capacity of 10,000 m3/h was needed for the L-Raum, the supposed undressing room. The same capacities are indicated by the invoice No. 171 of 22 February 1943 for Crematory II.
But the Topf invoice No. 729 dated 27 March 1943 cited by Pressac mentions that a ventilator with a capacity of 4,800 m3/h was required for the B-Raum, the supposed homicidal gas chamber, and that a ventilator with a capacity of 10,000 m3/h was needed for the L-Raum, the supposed changing room. The same capacities are indicated by the invoice No. 171 of 22 February 1943 for Crematory II.
(See: APMO, D- /Bau, nr. Inw.1967, and pp. 231-232 and pp. 246-247; for a photocopy of these documents.)
Consequently, for the supposed homicidal gas chamber, the SS had foreseen 4,800: 506 = 9.48 air exchanges per hour, while the supposed changing room 10,000: 902.7 = 11 air exchanges per hour.
The exactness of these data is also acknowledged by two “heroes” of the VT: Dr. Richard J. Green and Prof. John C. Zimmerman:
Dr. R.J. Green, "Report of Richard Green, Ph.D. submitted in Irving/Lipstadt/Penguin Books appeal," p.7.
http://www.holocaust-history.org/irving ... affweb.pdf
In other words, the Germans have used a gas chamber less ventilated than the changing room! This simple remark constitutes the proof that the Leichenkeller 1 wasn’t transformed into a gas chamber.
The different ventilation system (never modified or adapted for a supposed criminal use by the SS) between the LK1 and LK2 is clarified by the same Pressac in one passage and shows that the function of Leichenkeller 1 was that of one simple mortuary.
a. Leichenkeller 3 was to be the reception morgue, where the prison numbers of the corpses would be recorded;
b. Leichenkeller 2 was to be temporary storage for newly arrived and recorded corpses awaiting cremation (delay of 3 or 4 days);
c. Leichenkeller 1 was to take corpses several days old, beginning to decompose and thus requiring the room to be well ventilated, to be incinerated as soon as possible.
Pressac, Auschwitz: Technique and Operation of the Gas Chambers, op cit., p.284.
The ventilation system of LK1 and LK2 corresponds perfectly to parameters indicated by technical literature of the time: In a classic work on the planning of crematories, one reads that for morgues/mortuaries it was necessary to provide a minimum of five air changes per hour, and in case of intense utilization, up to ten exchanges.
W. Heepke, Die Leichenverbrennungs-Anstalten (die Krematorien)
. Halle a.S.: Verlag von Carl Marhold, 1905, p. 104.
Another question which deserves an accurate examination is the claim of VT “that all of the air in Leichenkeller 1 could be circulated by this air extraction system within 4 minutes.”
Just another speculative assertion by VT!
In reality, as shown above, the changes of air would have occurred every 7 minutes. But also this “ideal” figure is impossible in the presence of various physical, technical and chemical obstacles.
The ventilation system of the supposed gas chamber was in reality appropriate for a mortuary that needed to be aired out in order to eliminate the bad odor produced by the decomposition of the corpses. But as Pressac acknowledges, the system was not the most appropriate for ventilating a gas chamber.
The ventilation system of Leichenkeller 1 had initially been designed for a morgue, with the fresh air entering near the ceiling and the cold unhealthy air being drawn out near the floor. Its use as a gas chamber really required the reverse situation, with the fresh air coming in near the floor and warm air saturated with hydrocyanic acid being drawn out near the ceiling.
Pressac, Auschwitz: Technique and Operation of the Gas Chambers, op cit, p.224.
Now, the air entered through the upper orifices, then was extracted through the lower ones, so the poison gas had to exit through holes located just above the floor, which led to a "ventilation conduit" (Entlüftungskanal).
But this system is absolutely inconsistent with a large-scale gassing.
For various eyewitnesses, reproduced by the French researcher, according to R. Höss and M. Nyiszli (p. 473), 3,000 people were crammed in the LK1; 2,500 people, according to H. Tauber (p. 494); and 2,000, according to C. S. Bendel (pp. 469 and 471).
After the gassing of a large number of people, the corpses, heaped one on top of another, would have blocked most—if not all—of the air-extraction orifices. With a room full of lethal cyanide gas, the members of the Sonderkommando, in an eventual attempt to clear the orifices, and also wearing gas masks, would have been immediately killed. This signifies that the rate of exchanges per hour must be multiplied at least two or three times.
This problem could easily have been avoided had the Germans merely reversed the intake and exhaust airflow when they converted the morgue into a gas chamber. No change was performed!
Furthermore, since the air intake and outlet at the same wall of the morgue were very close together (2 meters), contrary to those at the opposite wall (7.3 meters), this would have led to an aerial short circuit, drastically reducing the performance of the ventilation system!
Another factor which would have influenced significantly the ideal times is given by the low temperature in the room. There was no heating available in this morgue, and considering that the boiling point of hydrogen cyanide (HCN) is 26 degrees Celsius (or 78 degrees Fahrenheit) the process of release of poison gas was very slow and had to separate from its carrier material. That is, HCN vaporizes, or changes from liquid to gas, at this temperature; but if the temperature is below vaporization, there will thus be more condensation—much of the HCN will change from gas to liquid. Zyklon B consists of pure hydrocyanic acid in liquid form, chemically stabilized and absorbed into a porous and inert base, generally in the form of gypsum granules, diatomaceous clay, paper or wooden disks, or small cubes of wood pulp.
Zyklon B was invented to release its hydrogen cyanide only very slowly, about 10% in the first 10 min. This made it ideal for fumigation purposes.
R. Irmscher, "Nochmals: 'Die Einsatzfähigkeit der Blausäure bei tiefen Temperaturen'," Zeitschrift für hygienische Zoologie und Schädlingsbekämpfung
, 1942, p. 35f.
Zyklon B also has another important specificity: It adheres to cold walls and penetrates more easily than other products to combat vermin, such as Areginal, Cartox, Ventox and other pesticides employed by Germans.
In addition to being cool year round, the Birkenau "gas chambers" were supposedly operated during the cold weather months of Fall, Winter and Spring. Due to its underground location, also in the presence of numerous people, the average temperature would hardly rise above 15°C.
Another problem is that because the inert carrier base containing the Zyklon may go on emitting hydrocyanic acid even after many hours of exposure, the manufacturers insist that the tins (Zyklon is marketed in tins) and all traces of the base material be removed before the treated area can be reoccupied (cf. Nuremberg Document NI-9912).
There is no testimony indicating that the Zyklon was removed by any means prior to the emptying of the gassed corpses in the chamber.
The text of a “special order” (Sonderbefehl
) dated August 12, 1942 and signed by Obersturmbannführer und Kommandant of Auschwitz Rudolf Höß and distributed in 40 copies throughout the camp of Auschwitz proves the dangers of each fumigation operation with Zyklon B.
"Eine heute mit leichten Vergiftungserscheinungen durch Blausaure aufgetretener Krankheitsfall gibt Veranlassung, allen an Vergasungen Beteiligten und allen uebrigen SS.
"Angehoerigen bekanntzugeben, dass insbosondere beim Oeffnen der vergasten Raeume von SS-Angehoerigen ohne Maske wenigstens 5 Stunden hindurch ein Abstand von 15 Metern von der Kammer gewahrt werden muss. Hierbei ist besonders auf die Windrichtung zu achten.
"Die jetzt verwendete Gas enthaelt weniger beigesetzte Geruchstoffe und ist daher besorders gefaehrlich.
"Der SS-Standortarzt Auschwitz lehnt die Verantwortung fur eintretende Unglueckfaelle in den Faellen ab, bei denen von SS-Angehoerigen diese Richtlinfen nicht eingehalten werden.“
Today there was a case of illness due to slight symptoms of poisoning with Prussic acid [i.e., Zyklon B,].
This makes it necessary to warn all those involved with gassings, as well as all other SS personnel, that especially when opening gassed rooms, SS personnel not wearing gas masks must wait at least five hours and keep a distance of 15 meters from the chamber. In this regard, particular attention should be paid to the wind direction.
The gas now being used contains less odor additive, and is therefore especially dangerous.
The SS garrison physician refuses to accept responsibility for accidents that may occur in cases where SS personnel do not obey these guidelines.
(See Pressac for the photocopy of this document and his comments, Auschwitz: Technique and Operations of Gas Chambers, op cit, p. 201. TCIDK 502-1-32, p. 300.)
Pressac cites also the testimony of a former prisoner of Auschwitz, a certain A. Rablin, who participated in delousing with Zyklon B. This was done in an improvised gas chamber located in Block 3 of Auschwitz. The delousing chamber was approximately 300 cubic meters in volume and was equipped with an exhaust fan and seven windows for ventilation. The concentration of hydrocyanic acid used in the delousing process was from 0.05 to 0.1 percent. Under these conditions the ventilation lasted two hours (p. 25).
So due to cold and the particular characteristics of Zyklon B a very large amount—probably on the order of 95% of the amount employed—was still present when the ventilation was started, and only a small part had reached the gaseous state.
Thus, as shown by Germar Rudolf, the first exchange of air could have occurred only after 1hour and maybe even later.
The result is shown in the following graph with different b-values, where b-values higher than 6 min mean: the time required to reach a poison gas level equal to that when assuming a perfect ventilation without obstacles, i.e. no.1 after 6 min.
1. One air exchange in 6 minutes (lowest line): perfect mixing of fresh air with loaded air, no objects in the room, no air short circuit. One air exchange means: on time the air volume equal to that of the morgue (minus the volume of 2.000 corpses) replaced.
2. One air exchange equivalent in 12 minutes (2nd line from bottom): less perfect mixing of fresh air with loaded air, some objects in the room, only little air short circuit allowed.
3. One air exchange equivalent in 24 minutes (3rd line from bottom): medium perfect mixing of fresh air with loaded air, many objects in the room, and/or air short circuit.
4. One air exchange equivalent in 96 minutes (4th line from bottom): bad mixing of fresh air with loaded air, extremely many objects in the room, air short circuit.
Germar Rudolf, "Critique of Claims Made by Robert Jan Van Pelt, in the case of David John Cawdell Irving, Plaintiff." (Jan-Apr, 2000); part C, par. 5.
As a means of comparison, seventy-two air exchanges per hour were foreseen for the disinfestation gas chambers with the Kreislauf system. The warm-air circulation disinfestation chambers constructed by DEGESCH (DEGESCH-Kreislauf-Anlage für Entlausung mit Zyklon-Blausäure
) had in effect a ventilator with a capacity of 12 m3 of air per minute, corresponding to 72 exchanges of air per hour.
G. Peters, E. Wüstiger, "Sach-Entlausung in Blausäure-Kammern", Zeitschrift für hygienische Zoologie und Schädlingsbekämpfung
, Heft 10/11, 1940, p. 195; P. Puntigam, H. Breymesser, E. Bernfus, "Blausäurekammern zur Fleckfieberabwehr." Sonderveröffentlichung des Reicharbeitsblattes
, Berlin, 1943, p. 50.
Under these circumstances, the Negationist Team does not see how one inadequate and surely not "powerful" system of ventilation could remove the HCN from the presumed gas chamber in twenty minutes in order to permit the entrance of the members of Sonderkommando.
The actual practice of such an operation would certainly have ended disastrously, with the death of all people in and around of the gas chamber.
We await further enlightenment from the Veritas Team.