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GE Scientists Unveil Greener, Smarter Sleigh for Santa Claus
Posted: 24-Dec-2012 [Source: GE]

[GE scientists announce upgrades to Santa's sleigh including flight enhancements along with new lighter-weight and stronger materials.]

Niskayuna, NJ and North Pole -- Just in time for Christmas, a team of GE scientists and engineers have introduced several new features to Santa’s sleigh. The updated sleigh incorporates a number of new technologies that will make Santa’s travels greener, faster and much more efficient.

“It has been three years since we introduced a new sleigh for Santa, and we figured it was time to provide a few upgrades to make his ride even better,” said Mark Little, Senior Vice President and Director of GE Global Research. “With the advancements GE scientists have made in 3-D printing, new materials like CMCs and the great opportunities to make machines smarter with the Industrial Internet, we have incorporated several new technologies to give Santa and his reindeer team a greener, smarter sleigh.”

When learning about the new upgrades, both Santa and the reindeer were excited. Santa commented, “I am looking forward to flying into outer space. This will really save time by helping me get to destinations in different parts of the world much faster.”

And on behalf of all the reindeer, Rudolph commented, “The new feature that allows Santa to switch to electric power is welcomed by all the reindeer. Covering the entire globe can be pretty exhausting and having the opportunity to rest along our journey will help us remain in peak condition.”

New features of the sleigh include:

A thin cooling solution that can improve jet engine aerodynamics and outfit Santa with a cooler, thinner laptop.

Air Traffic Management Technology to help Santa and the reindeer steer clear of the planes en route on Christmas Eve.

An Electric Traction Motor with MEMS switching technology to quickly and efficiently transfer power of Santa’s sleigh over to the electric motor to give the reindeer a break.

3-D printed sleigh blades for a more aerodynamic design to improve energy efficiency paired with a tough, flexible fabric to give Santa greater lift and maneuverability.

An upgraded sleigh frame made from GE’s high temperature Ceramic Matrix Composites (CMCs) that will save energy and time by enabling flight into outer space and back.

GE’s Durathon battery for reliably powering the accouterments in Santa’s sleigh. The battery can function under extreme temperature conditions.

Little concluded, “On behalf of all of GE’s scientists and engineers, Happy Holidays and best wishes for prosperous 2013 ahead.”

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