What Would Happen In Case of a Zombie Apocalypse?
What would happen in the event of a zombie apocalypse? Well, a group of student scientists at the University of Leicester’s Journal of Physics Special Topics set out to find out just that. The result is that, in 100 day’s time, there would only be some 273 people left alive on the entire planet.
In order to come to this number, the students made use of the SIR model, which is used in epidemiology in order to simulate how diseases spread over time and people. And this wasn’t the first time zombies were used as a metaphor in the public health research either. The Lancet published a paper titled “Zombie infections: epidemiology, treatment, and prevention.”
In the analysis performed here, the undergrads assumed that each zombie would have a 90% percent chance of finding and infecting someone. At this rate, this hypothetical zombie apocalypse would be twice as contagious as the Black Plague from the Middle Ages. The researchers also took into account that each zombie would go without sustenance for 20 days before starving to death.
And with a starting human population of 7.5 billion people, the researchers calculated that it would take a single zombie some 20 days to start a fully blown epidemic. If we were to not take into account any geographical isolations, the human population would drop to 181 within the first 100 days of the epidemic, with some 190 million zombies alive at the time.
With the geographical isolation, however, that number would be 273 humans left within the first 100 days. With this parameter put in place, the researchers calculated that zombies would not leave the area until 100,000 would get infected.
“We have also not included the possibility for the humans to kill the zombies,” they wrote.
In a newer version of the experiment, they gave the zombies one-year long lifespan but gave the human survivors a 10% chance of killing the zombie if they encountered it. They also accounted for human reproduction here with each female survivor being able to bare children every three years.
Yet again, the human population dropped off significantly, but after some 1,000 days, all the zombies died off and in 10,000 days after the pandemic had begun, the humans would start to recover.