# Santa Clause (an Engineer's Perspective)

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
I could not stop laughing when I found this a few months ago.
http://www.laughbreak.com/stories/santa_clause__an_engineer_s_pe.html
There are approximately two billion children (persons under 18) in the world. However, since Santa does not visit children of Muslim, Hindu, Jewish or Buddhist religions, this reduces the workload for Christmas night to 15% of the total, or 378 million (according to the Population Reference Bureau). At an average (census) rate of 3.5 children per house hold, that comes to 108 million homes, presuming that there is at least one good child in each.

Santa has about 31 hours of Christmas to work with, thanks to the different time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming he travels east to west (which seems logical). This works out to 967.7 visits per second. This is to say that for each Christian household with a good child, Santa has around 1/1000th of a second to park the sleigh, hop out, jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, distribute the remaining presents under the tree, eat whatever snacks have been left for him, get back up the chimney, jump into the sleigh and get on to the next house. Assuming that each of these 108 million stops is evenly distributed around the earth (which, of course, we know to be false, but will accept for the purposes of our calculations), we are now talking about 0.78 miles per household; a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not counting bathroom stops or breaks. This means Santa's sleigh is moving at 650 miles per second - 3,000 times the speed of sound. For purposes of comparison, the fastest man-made vehicle, the Ulysses space probe, moves at a poky 27.4 miles per second, and a conventional reindeer can run (at best) 15 miles per hour.

The payload of the sleigh adds another interesting element. Assuming that each child gets nothing more than a medium sized Lego set (two pounds), the sleigh is carrying over 500 thousand tons, not counting Santa himself. On land, a conventional reindeer can pull no more than 300 pounds. Even granting that the "flying" reindeer could pull ten times the normal amount, the job can't be done with eight or even nine of them - Santa would need 360,000 of them. This increases the payload, not counting the weight of the sleigh, another 54,000 tons, or roughly seven times the weight of the Queen Elizabeth (the ship, not the monarch).

600,000 tons traveling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air resistance - this would heat up the reindeer in the same fashion as a spacecraft re-entering the earth's atmosphere. The lead pair of reindeer would absorb 14.3 quintillion joules of energy per second each. In short, they would burst into flames almost instantaneously, exposing the reindeer behind them and creating deafening sonic booms in their wake. The entire reindeer team would be vaporized within 4.26 thousandths of a second, or right about the time Santa reached the fifth house on his trip. Not that it matters, however, since Santa, as a result of accelerating from a dead stop to 650 m.p.s. in .001 seconds, would be subjected to centrifugal forces of 17,500 g's. A 250 pound Santa (which seems ludicrously slim) would be pinned to the back of the sleigh by 4,315,015 pounds of force, instantly crushing his bones and organs, and reducing him to a quivering blob of pink goo.

Therefore, if Santa did exist, he's dead now.

Merry Christmas!

#### falconguard

##### Carbon based lifeform
Political Access
FALSE--Everybody knows that he uses chemically altered magical reindeer, He has this magic dust ..see.

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
FALSE--Everybody knows that he uses chemically altered magical reindeer, He has this magic dust ..see.
That's scientifically not possible.

#### Lauzyguy

Nice post SkyFuser, that was a very interesting story. Also, there are many things that are out there in the world that can't be explained scientifically.

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
Nice post SkyFuser, that was a very interesting story. Also, there are many things that are out there in the world that can't be explained scientifically.

Any examples?
Might I also add that all facts have been known to have scientific explanations.
Yes... there are lots of things... that are waiting to be explained through science. Religion is one of them:dead:

#### marlon112

FALSE--Everybody knows that he uses chemically altered magical reindeer, He has this magic dust ..see.

Steroids!

Nice post Sky. I've read that before and it's still pretty exciting to read lol.

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
Steroids!

Nice post Sky. I've read that before and it's still pretty exciting to read lol.

Me back from them schools
I think "hormones" is what you're aiming for.
I still laugh every time. Sadly I explain to my mom and she has no idea what's so funny. Sigh <_<

#### Omnibus

I read this a long time ago. Good to see it again.

Oh... and I'm going in to the College of Engineering this Fall. XD

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
Oh... and I'm going in to the College of Engineering this Fall. XD
:O Nice! Good luck XD What are you majoring in?

#### marlon112

:O Nice! Good luck XD What are you majoring in?

Can I guess?

...Engineering? :lick:

#### SkyFuser

##### Techtard in Training
Political Access
Can I guess?

...Engineering? :lick:

:laugh: Yes, I could figure out that much. No, it was cooking O_O
But there's bioengineering, architectural engineering, computer engineering... etc.

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Also Hi EP and people. I found this place again while looking through a oooollllllldddd backup. I have filled over 10TB and was looking at my collection of antiques. Any bids on the 500Mhz Win 95 fix?
Any of the SP crew still out there?
Impressed you have kept this alive this long EP! So many sites have come and gone.

Just did some crude math and I apparently joined almost 18yrs ago, how is that possible???
hello peeps... is been some time since i last came here.
Rest in peace my friend, been trying to find you and finally did in the worst way imaginable.