Since 1955, the team at North American Aerospace Defense Command, better known as NORAD, has kept track of a certain toy-filled sleigh pulled by reindeer.
Curious kids can follow Santa’s route on Christmas Eve, as well as receive updates from the North Pole online at NORAD Tracks Santa.
We are told Rudolph’s glowing red nose gives off an infrared signal that can be detected by NORAD’s satellites. If this doesn’t convince the kids that Santa is on his way, nothing will.
Leading up to the big day, kids of all ages can explore Santa’s Village, play games and watch movies.
Like Santa, the site can speak to children in many languages, including English, Spanish, French, German, Italian, Chinese and Japanese.
Since Santa is so important, as are the presents he brings, NORAD is no longer alone tracking Santa.
Google tracks Santa
Google has gotten into the act with Google Santa Tracker.
It’s got silly Elf music, and a daily calendar that tells you just what Santa and the Elves are doing that day, or play Santa games.
You can access the Google Santa Tracker also via Google Assistant and Amazon Echo.
- ecoxplorer tip: Click on #3 for translations into more than a dozen languages, using Google Translation.
In the early days, curious kids had to telephone North American Aerospace Defense Command to find out Santa’s flight path. Thanks to modern technology, including satellites, radar and GPS, today’s it’s all done by computer.
NORAD won’t reveal its top-secret tracking techniques, but we know a combination of radar, satellites, Santa-Cams and fighter jets are used from the moment his sleigh leaves the Elves and Mrs. Claus at the North Pole until takes off to its return landing.
Google won’t reveal its technology, either, but we suspect it relies heavily on Google Maps and Google Earth.
So what’s your story this year?
Have you been naughty or nice?
This article was first posted in 2014 and is updated annually, including for 2021, because we need to keep track of Santa every year.
ecoXplorer Evelyn Kanter is a journalist with 20+ years of experience as a newspaper and magazine writer, radio & TV news producer & reporter, and guidebook and smartphone app author – all focusing on travel, automotive, the environment and your rights as a consumer.
Contact me at email@example.com.
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