Tue, 06 Jun 95 13:08:46 BST

The math is off in some places, but it's still funny. DW
Article 20369 of eunet.jokes:
Newsgroups: eunet.jokes
Path: ukc!uknet!warwick!!nott-cs!trent-doc!chris!hnd1rpr
From: hnd1rpr@chris (Prichard Robert)
Subject: Santa
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Organization: The Nottingham Trent University, DOC.
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Date: Mon, 5 Jun 1995 12:14:48 GMT
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	Something someone mailed me :
(don't read it if you still believe in Santa)
	A scientific enquiry into Santa Clause.
1)  No known species of reindeer can fly. But there are 300,000 species 
of living organisms yet to be classified, and while most of them are 
insects and germs this does not *completely* rule out flying reindeer 
that only santa has ever seen.
2)  There are 2 billion children (persons under 18) in the world. But 
since Santa doesn't (appear) to handle the Muslim, Hindu, Jewish and 
Budist children that reduces the work load to 15% of the total- 378 
milion according to the Population reference Bureau. At an average census 
rate of 3.5 children per household, thats only 91.8 million homeshomes. 
One presumes that there is one good child in each.
3) Santa has 31 hours of Christmas to work with thanks to the different 
time zones and the rotation of the earth, assuming that he travels from 
east to west, which seems sensible. This works out to 822.6 visits per 
second. This is to say that for each Christian household with good 
children, Santa has 1/1000th of a second to park, hop out of the sleigh, 
jump down the chimney, fill the stockings, distribiute the remaining 
presents, eat whatever snacks have been left and get back up the ney into 
the sleigh and move on to the next house. Assuming that each of these 
91.8 milllion stops are evenly distributed (which we know to be false but 
for the purposes of our calculations we will accept), we are now talking 
about .78 miles per household, a total trip of 75.5 million miles, not 
counting stops to do what most of us do at least once every 31 hours, 
plus feeding etc.
This means that Santas sleigh is moving at 650 miles per second, 3000 
times the speed of sound. For puposes of comparrision, the fastest 
man-made vehicle on earth, the Ulysses space probe moves at a poky 27.4 
miles per second - a convensional reindeer can run , tops, 15 mph.
4) The payload on the sleigh adds another interseting element. Assuming 
that each child gets no more than a medium sized lego set (2lb), the 
sleigh is carrying 321,000 tons, not counting Santa, who is universally 
described as overweight. On land, the convetional reindeer can pull 300lb. 
Even granting that "flying reindeer" (see #1) could pull 10 times there 
own weight we cannot do the job of 8 or even 9. We need 214,200 reindeer. 
This increases the payload- not counting the weight of the sled- to 
353,430 tons. Which is 4 times the weight of the Queen Mary  (the ship).
5) 353,000 tons traveling at 650 miles per second creates enormous air 
resistance- this will heat up the reindeer in the same fashion as 
spacecrafts re-entering the earth atmosphere. The lead pair of reindeer 
absorb 14.3 QUINTILLION (thats 1 million raised to the power 5) joules 
of energy. Per second. Each. In short they will burst into flames, 
exposing the reindeer behind them, and create deafenning sonic booms in 
their wake. The entire reindeer team will be vaporized within 4.26/1000 
of a second. Santa, meanwhile, will be subjected to centrifugal forces 
17,500.06 times greater than gravity. A 250lb Santa (which seems 
ludicously slim) would be pinned to the back of the sleigh by 4,315,015 
pounds of force (g's)
In conclusion:
If Santa *did* deliver presents on Christmas eve he didn't do it for very 
long and he only did it once.
|Robert Pritchard, Nottingham-Trent Uni        |    Jesus built |
||       _MY_     |  
|                         |      hotrod    |