TML wishes you a happy 2018!

Transport & Mobility Leuven takes its research seriously. In 2017, we have served society with countless in-depth analyses and discussions. At the final meeting we could conclude: 2018 will be even more fantastic! Enjoy the holidays!

Need some fuel for your 6 kilometres-long bike trip? Those two pralines after Christmas dinner will do the trick!

100 g = 6 pralines = 560 kcal.
Cycling at 20 km/h for a 70 kg person = 560 kcal / hour, or 560 kcal / 20 km.
Thus, 1 praline = 3 km of cycling.

The battery of one electrical car = 17 gourmet party's.

The power of a gourmet appliance = 1.2kW during 3 hours = 3.6kWh.
The battery of a Tesla S = 60kWh = about 17 times 3.6kWh.

A single tram can transport 1000 to 1 500 presents. Impressive? It sure is! (Although it's still nothing compared to the achievements of Santa’s sleigh which is supposedly capable of transporting 60 000 tons of presents at a speed faster than starlight...)

The most recent trams in Antwerp’s tramway network are called Hermelijn and Albatros. A tram of type Hermelijn can transport 250 passengers, an Albatros up to 380. Assuming trams from the commercial city centre are crowded with Christmas shoppers in the last days before Christmas and passengers carry on average 4 presents each, a single tram will transport 1 000 to 1 500 presents.
Even though public transport company De ey pale compared to the achievements of Santa’s sleigh which is supposedly capable of transporting 60 000 tons of present at a speed faster than starlight.

Rudolph the reindeer can travel with 113 999 of his reindeer friends on a single containership.

A reindeer is 2 m long, 1 m wide, 2 m in height so 6 of them fit in a TEU.
A recent megaship can load 19 000 TEU, so 114 000 reindeer.
The largest reindeer herd lives in Russia and counts 400 000 tot 1 million animals.

If half of the Belgian households decorates their home with a real Christmas tree, you would need 24 112 trucks to transport them.

Number of households in Belgium = 4 822 301, 50% gets a real Christmas tree.
According to a Dutch survey, 41 %  of the trees is 1.75 to 2 m in height, 29% is smaller and 23 % is larger, giving an average of 1.75 m. If the tree is on average 0.5 m wide, this amounts to 0.439375 m
A large truck with a loading volume of 44 m can hold 100 trees.

If you would decorate all the overhead contact lines of the Belgian railway system, you would need no less than 10.99 million lights.

Belgium has 3 518 km rail lines of which 2 934 km is electrified, and 2 563 km is double track. So we have 5 497 km overhead contact lines. Classic Christmas lighting has 20 lamps per 10 m.

Would you rather burn 1 Christmas tree or drive 884 km with your car? Both cause the same amount of particle pollution.

A small tree of 1.5 m weighs about 13 kg.  Burning a tree emits 1.7 g of particles per kg of tree. Thus burning our Christmas tree emits 22.1 g of particles.
An average diesel car (euro 4) emits 0.025 g of particles per km driven.

1 Christmas tree = 1.75 litres of biofuel

We can obtain 2 kg (or 2.5 litre) of biofuel per 10 kg of feedstock (dry weight).  A Christmas tree is 7 kg (oven dry weight).

It would take 381 classic traffic lights or 191 intelligent traffic lights to decorate Leuven's big Christmas Tree. (So intelligent traffic lights are definitely the most efficient option...)

The Christmas tree is 22 m. Assuming a 60 angle, this is a surface of 323 m to decorate.
The aesthetic ideal relation lights to branches is 1 to 9. The lamp of a typical traffic light has a 200 mm diameter = 0.0314 m. So we need 1143 lamps.
There are 3 lamps in a classic traffic light, and 6 lamps in an intelligent traffic light.

To get the same amount of traffic on Christmas Day as on a regular day, every single person would need to visit their parents-in-law by car. (each car being occupied by 2 persons, with an average distance of 30 km)

If all of the 11.3 million Belgians would take the car to visit their parents-in-law (or another relative) for Christmas, assuming an average distance of 30 km and 2 persons per car on average, the total distance travelled would amount to 339 million km. This is slightly more than on a normal working day.

If the 3 kings would say goodbye to their trusted camel and travel by e-bike instead, we would celebrate Three Kings’ Day on December 27th and not on January 6th.

Three Kings' Days is 12 days after Christmas.  A camel can run for days at 3.5 km/h.
A fast e-bike gets 45 km/h, but the biker needs to rest, load batteries and eat, so we assume 21 km/h. This is 6 times faster than the camel, so it takes 2 days instead of 12.

Would you want a white Christmas? Think twice (before taking your car): every centimetre of snow = + 37 km of congestion on Belgian highways.

On Monday 11 December 2017, there were 700 km of traffic jams on the Belgian motorways, compared to a normal 150 km. This was caused by 15 cm of snow, hence you get 37 km more traffic jams per cm of snow. The 11 December traffic jam has cost the economy 25.6 million euro.

If our highways were turned into cross-country skiing lanes, would our roads have the same capacity? The capacity would raise to 17 328.5 professional nordic skiers (marathon) per driving lane as opposed to 3 630 persons per driving lane/hour. But... Amateur cross country skiers … will cause a huge wintery road congestion and regret having started this trial.

A lane has a capacity of 3 630 people per hour in 2 200 cars with an occupancy rate of 1.65.
Assuming that the classic cross country skiing style is used (a.k.a. nordic), two same-directional tracks can be created for each driving lane (1 m offset to the sides and between 1 and 1.2 m offset between tracks as per regulations). Professional cross country skiers can reach average speeds of 24 km/h (~6,67m/s) for long distances (50 km). On a normal flat trajectory they average 32 km/h. One professional cross country skier takes up approx. 197 cm + 40 cm (ski length + skier-to-skier distance). The capacity for one lane/hour is then 8 664 professional nordic skiers (marathon) per track … or 17 328.5 professional nordic skiers (marathon) per driving lane.

1 million people singing Jingle Bells together = the noise of an aeroplane.

A plane's sound is 140 dB.
One person singing loudly is 80 dB.
It's a logarithmic scale, so you need 1 million persons (assuming they are singing on the same spot, with the same frequency and in phase).

The emission of one car = one Christmas ball filled with CO2 every 8 metres.

A Christmas ball with a diameter of 10 cm has a volume of about 0.5 l using pi*(4/3)*r^3.
CO2 weighs 40 g per mol, and one mol is 22.4 litres at 1 bar and 0 C.
A Christmas ball thus holds 1 g of CO2.
A car emits about 150 g of CO2 per km.