How Santa tours the world in one night at Christmas

A space scientist has proved that Santa’s epic journey to all the world’s children in one night is possible. Laws of physics can explain his seemingly fantastic Christmas Eve marathon, he says.

Santa snapped by NORAD

Dr Larry Silverberg, an American professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering, has made a special study of Father Christmas’s activities.

He says Santa – pictured here by a North American Aerospace Defense Command satellite passing the International Space Station earlier tonight – combines his awareness of electromagnetic waves, computer science, nanotechnology, genetic engineering and the space-time continuum to get the job done.

First, he tunes in to what children want for Christmas with an aerial using technology found in mobile phones and heart monitors. A computer filters the data – but letters sent by ordinary mail still get read too.

Santa is able to nip around the globe in one night thanks to a “relativity cloud” – Einstein’s discovery that time can be stretched and space squeezed. “Rips in time allow him months to deliver presents while only a few minutes pass on Earth,” says Dr Silverberg, of North Carolina State University.

SatNav-style technology in his on-board computer helps prepare a detailed route. The sleigh is pulled by reindeer that have been genetically bred to fly, balance on rooftops and see in the dark.

There are no weight problems on the sleigh because the toys are only built when Santa reaches each child’s home, using a nano-toymaker. This creates them atom by atom from snow and soot, in a similar way to how DNA makes body parts grow. The same “relativity cloud” that allows Santa to deliver all presents in the wink of an eye lets him squeeze his body down chimneys into people’s homes.

Food left out for Santa and the reindeer at millions of homes is not wasted. They enjoy a quick nibble but the rest is preserved by the sleigh’s built-in food dehydrator for future consumption.

Dr Silverberg says: “Children shouldn’t put too much credence in the opinions of those who say it’s not possible to deliver presents all over the world in one night. It is possible, and it’s based on plausible science.”

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Paul Sutherland

Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.
Paul Sutherland

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Paul Sutherland

I have been a professional journalist for nearly 40 years. I write regularly for science magazines including BBC Sky at Night magazine, BBC Focus, Astronomy Now and Popular Astronomy. I have also authored three books on astronomy and contributed to others.

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