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NORAD reveals Santa's sleigh specs

President Obama may have been wrong about the C-130 military aircraft being "more efficient" than Santa's sleigh, which NORAD says is "faster than starlight."

By Ben Hooper
NORAD reveals Santa's sleigh specs
U.S. President Barack Obama boogies with Santa Clause during the National Christmas Tree Lighting, Dec. 4, 2014, in Washington, D.C. Photo by Chris Kleponis/UPI/pool | License Photo

WASHINGTON, Dec. 17 (UPI) -- NORAD's Santa-tracking program released information on St. Nick's sleigh indicating President Barack Obama was wrong about its specs.

Obama joked Monday at the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst in New Jersey that the C-130 military transport aircraft is "a little more efficient than Santa's sleigh," but the North American Aerospace Defense Command's Santa tracking program suggested the commander-in-chief underestimated the jolly old elf's preferred mode of transport.

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"We really don't want to compare Santa's sleigh to a C-130, but what we can confirm is that Santa's sleigh is a versatile, all weather, multi-purpose, vertical short-take-off and landing vehicle," a NORAD representative told Business Insider. "It is capable of traveling vast distances without refueling and is deployed, as far as we know, only Dec. 24 (and sometimes briefly for a test flight about a month before Christmas)."

NORAD, which confirmed Friday it is ready to track Santa's Christmas Eve flight, released a fact sheet with "technical data" on the sleigh on the Santa-tracking program's official website.

Designer & Builder: K. Kringle & Elves, Inc.

Probable First Flight: Dec. 24, 343 A.D.

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Home Base: North Pole

Length: 75 cc (candy canes) / 150 lp (lollipops)

Width: 40 cc / 80 lp

Height: 55 cc / 110 lp

Note: Length, width and height are without reindeer

Weight at takeoff: 75,000 gd (gumdrops)

Passenger weight at takeoff: Santa Claus 260 pounds

Weight of gifts at takeoff: 60,000 tons

Weight at landing: 80,000 gd (ice & snow accumulation)

Passenger weight at landing: 1,260 pounds

Propulsion: Nine (9) rp (reindeer power)

Armament: Antlers (purely defensive)

Fuel: Hay, oats and carrots (for reindeer)

Emissions: Classified

Climbing speed: One "T" (Twinkle of an eye)

Max speed: Faster than starlight

NORAD has been tracking Santa yearly ever since 1955, when the phone number for its predecessor, the Continental Air Defense Command, was mistakenly printed in a Sears Roebuck & Co. advertisement and labeled as the telephone number for children to call Santa.

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