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Saturday, December 8, 2007

A Little Santa Claus Trivia

A NASA Physicist was interviewed as part of a TV documentary on the history of Christmas traditions. In the interview he was questioned on the practicality of Santa visiting all the children of the world in one night. He had quite an interesting answer using scientific data to explain his claim.

If Santa started at 7:00 pm at the date line, which is mid Pacific Ocean, and traveled east he could maintain the 7:00 pm time zone as he traveled around the world. This would be taking advantage of the time difference going backward as he traveled in that direction. A simple example would be traveling from New York to Los Angeles gains the traveler 3 hours. Of course Santa is traveling much faster than a plane. He described Santa's speed as much faster than the Space Shuttle.

With traveling the world and still arriving at 7:00 pm at the original time zone, Santa would then continue again and be able to use the rest of the hours of the evening, which started at 7:00 pm, for delivery. The total amount of hours that Santa would have available to him, in one evening, would be 34.

Back to speed of travel. The NASA physicist indicated that given an average of two children per household around the world, we can assume that Santa would have to deliver to 1.8 billion children in those 34 hours. Given the amount of time and children, this would mean Santa would have to deliver to 7000 households per second. This figure did not take into account the "naughty" that were crossed off the drop off list or Santa's ratio of naughty to nice. The physicist said nothing about time for cookies. I guess the speed of travel accounts for Santa maintaining his weight.

The documentary also looked into the use of reindeer for travel. An interesting tidbit was found there as well. I think we all understood that the reindeer were males as they have male names. Interestingly enough, male reindeer lose their antlers yearly. During the winter months males do not have antlers. All the reindeer pictures show reindeer with antlers. Therefore, Santa clearly used women drivers! You go girls! Just supports that old saying....if you want something done right, send in a woman. This was not an intentional pitch for Hillary Clinton.

Happy Holidays!

2 comments:

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ShadowKnight said...

I am sure Santa feels the need, the need for speed!

With such speed he should be in the Olympics doing all the running events. Heck after the first 3rd of a marathon he could dawdle the rest of the way and win.