Which do you suppose exerts more pressure on the gound- an elephant or a woman standing on spike heels?

Lets do a quick calculation.

A typical woman would way in at about 70 kg. If she is wearing spike heels, standing on her heels, her total surface area conveying her weight to the floor would be the sum of the area of the heels. Let's say her spike heels each have a surface area of 0,16 cm2
This would be possible is say they were 0,4 cm x 0,4 cm.

That would mean she has a total pressure of 70 kg on 0,16 cm2. This is the same as 437,5 kg pr. cm2.


Now for the elephant!

A male African elephant can weigh as much as 4.500 - 6.000 kg. For the sake of this calculation lets say the elephant weighs 5.000 kg.

An elephants foot can be as large as 40-50 cm in length and width. The circumference can be as large as 1,3 m.
From math we know that A = π x r2
We know π, but we need to know the radius, r.
This we could take from the width / length measurements, but we want to find it for a circle that has a circumference of 1.3 m.

Since O = π x d => O / π = d => d = 41,4 cm. This equals a radius of 20,7.
No we can calculate the surface area of 1 elephant foot to be π x 20,72 = 1345, 45 cm2.
Since an elephant has 4 feet, the total surface area will be 5381,8 cm2

This gives the elephant a weight to surface-area of 5000 kg on 5381,8 square centimeters of surface, which equals 0,92 kg /cm2.
Compare this to the womans which was 437,5 kg / cm2. (Though you should keep in mind, that the womans total surface area was only 0.16 cm2).

The answer is: The woman has by far the most pressure on the ground compared to an elephant. Actually she has 470 times as much pressure. This is why you want women to take of their high heels at your party, if you have wooden floors.
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