healthHealth and Medicine

Study Looks Into Your Chances Of Surviving A Zombie Apocalypse


Tom Hale

Senior Journalist

clockJan 5 2017, 20:29 UTC

Tithi Luadthong/Shutterstock

You’ve got stacks of canned food, a chainsaw at the ready, and the doors all nailed shut. But in case your zombie apocalypse survival plan is in need of a review, physics students from the University of Leicester in the UK have looked into the rate of survival in the case of a hypothetical zombie viral outbreak.

Their study even managed to get published in the Journal of Physics Special Topics, a peer-reviewed student journal.


Working on the premise that a zombie can find one person each day, their findings said there’s a 90 percent chance of a zombie infecting a victim with the zombie-virus. After 100 days of zombie infection, they worked out there would be just 273 remaining human survivors. That would mean zombies outnumber humans a million to one.

They came to these conclusions using the SIR model – a scientific model that helps to gauge the spread of a disease throughout a population. They even managed to factor in that survivors may be less likely to become infected over time, as they gain experience or skills to fend off and fight zombies.

It isn’t all bad news, however. In a follow-up study, they included human reproduction rates and the chances of humans killing zombies. They found that the world’s human population would eventually be able to replenish itself.

Dr Mervyn Roy, their tutor from University of Leicester’s Department of Physics and Astronomy, said in a statement: “Every year we ask students to write short papers for the Journal of Physics Special Topics. It lets the students show off their creative side and apply some of physics they know to the weird, the wonderful, or the everyday.”

healthHealth and Medicine
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