By Suzanne Ma
MANHATTAN — New Yorkers doubting St. Nick's ability to deliver toys to the world's good girls and boys in just one night should start believing — not in the magic, but in the science of Santa Claus.
With state of the art nanotechnology and an advanced understanding of aerodynamics, Santa Claus can travel the world in the blink of an eye, deliver gifts to the smallest of Manhattan apartments, and know whether New Yorkers have been good or bad this year.
"Santa is using technologies that we are not yet able to recreate in our own labs," explained Larry Silverberg, a professor of mechanical and aerospace engineering from North Carolina State University.
"He's not just a jolly elf that's overweight. He's a technologically savvy kind of guy."
Silverberg, who has spent years studying the science of Santa, has taken theoretical scientific concepts and is using them to explain the magic of Father Christmas.
But if anyone ever asks Silverberg why he knows so much about Santa, he'll tell you about his recent trip to the North Pole where he spent six months in Santa's workshop as a visiting scholar.
Silverberg told DNAinfo that he has returned from his trip with a few secrets Santa was willing to share:
DNAinfo: How is Santa able to visit all the boys and girls in the world?
Silverberg: Santa recognizes that time can be stretched like a rubber band, space can be squeezed like an orange and light can be bent. Relativity clouds are controllable domains, rips in time, that allow him months to deliver presents while only a few minutes pass on Earth. The presents are truly delivered in a wink of an eye.
DNAinfo: And how is Santa able to visit all the New York children, packed so densely into tall Manhattan apartment buildings?
Silverberg: The city is very high density and this helps Santa to do his job efficiently. It's in the rural community he ends up having to spend a lot more time scheduling his route. He ends up traveling a lot more between each house, as opposed to hitting a number of families in one apartment building in Manhattan.
DNAinfo: What if there's no fireplace?
Silverberg: The relativity cloud also gives Santa the ability to morph and squeeze into the tiniest of openings. He doesn't have to get in by a fireplace. Of course, the fireplace is best, plus he likes to get the cookies, and it's not easy to activate the relativity clouds in such a small space. But, no homes are airtight.
DNAinfo: Let's talk about Santa's sleigh. I get the idea Santa's got a cool set of wheels.
Silverberg: You got that right! The truss of the sleigh, including the runners, are made of a honeycombed titanium alloy that is very lightweight and 10 to 20 times stronger than anything we can make today. The truss can also morph, allowing it to cut through the air more efficiently.
The sleigh is also equipped with state of the art electronics, including laser sensors that can detect upcoming wind conditions to find the optimal path.
DNAinfo: Did you meet any of the reindeer?
Silverberg: Yes. But reindeer, of course, don't fly. They have jetpacks that are powered by cold fusion and help the reindeer fly as fast as 100 miles per hour. When Santa pulls on the reigns, he not only directs the reindeer, he orients them and stabilizes their flight patterns. We tested this out in a wind tunnel.
DNAinfo: Neat. I'd imagine that the reindeer have to be pretty strong to carry Santa and all those gifts in his sack.
Silverberg: The own sheer weight of flying all the presents would be too much. So what we came to realize is that Santa grows the presents right there under the tree using a nanotechnology.
DNAinfo: No. Way.
Silverberg: It's true. We believe Santa has an on site toy factory. He can grow the presents, wrapping and all, in the magic sack.
DNAinfo: How does Santa know if you've been good or bad?
Silverberg: There's a two-mile by two-mile antenna that's up and running in the North Pole. Santa is able to listen to children's thoughts by looking at electro-magnetic waves that emanate from the brain. He has developed a technology to distinguish between good and bad thoughts.
DNAinfo: Wow. That's got to be in violation a number of privacy laws right there.
Silverberg: Yes. Thank God all that information in the trustful hands of Santa.