Numbers behind Christmas!

Santamory has the answer!

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santamory2Hello, Santamory here! You know, the one in charge of all the science and technology here at the North Pole.

Deep under the Pole, my team of elves and I experiment with some of the latest technology behind heat resistant materials, genetic computing and warped metrics of time and space – all so we can improve on the reliability of Santa Clause to deliver presents to children every year.

Now maybe you think that Christmas hasn’t got anything to do with numbers – unless you’re counting the number of sleeps until the big day.

But Christmas is FULL of numbers. Here, let me explain.

Across the world, old Santa will be delivering gifts to around 1.6 billion children on Christmas Eve. That’s visiting over 5,000 homes every second to make sure every child gets a gift. With an average of 2.5 children per household, Santa will need to make 640 million stops on Christmas Eve.

Now Santa is quite partial to the add glass of milk and a mince pie as he travels around. If he drinks a 200ml glass of milk and eats one mince pie at each home, he will consume almost 130 million litres of milk by the time he’s finished – enough to fill over 50 Olympic swimming pools. He will also have eaten nearly 40,000 metric tonnes worth of mince pies.

To work off these extra calories, Santa would need to walk 1.3 billion miles, which is 54,000 times around the circumference of the earth. And all of that is after the presents have been wrapped.

Now, on average each elf can wrap a present in 10 seconds. Working an 8 hour day, we need 3,000 elves in the wrapping department to work for an entire year to get the job done.And assuming that each present needs 80cm of wrapping – we use over 1.5 million miles of paper. And once wrapped, all those presents have to go somewhere…

Prior to the big night, we store all the presents this huge warehouse. It’s so big in here that you could fit in 240,000 double-decker buses!

So you can see how hard Santa and the elves have to work – so make sure you don’t forget that mince pie on Christmas Eve and a carrot for Rudolph!

You can hear The Science of Christmas weekdays from 8:30am and 3pm on Fun Kids!

Listen back to any episodes you’ve missed below!

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The Science of Christmas with support from Institute of Physics, The Royal Aeronautical Society and The Institution of Engineering and Technology.


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