Students create new record by folding toilet paper 13 times
Mathematics students from a school in UK have broken a paper-folding record by completing 13 folds.Mathematics students from a school in UK have broken a paper-folding record by completing 13 folds.
The students from St. Mark's School in Southborough, Massachusetts, had been tackling this challenge for the past seven years with the help of their teacher James Tanton.
They found that based on the thickness of a sheet of paper, a formula can be used to calculate the minimum length needed to fold it a given number of times.
The paper roughly doubles in size when it is folded each time and the sides become more rounded that makes it harder and harder to bend.
Wrinkles also have a significant impact and make the formula difficult to follow in practice.
No single roll is long enough to fold thirteen times, requiring the group to attach numerous rolls of industrial toilet paper, making it 1.2 kilometres long.
To achieve this feat, the students first arranged and taped 64 layers of paper into the physical structure of the sixth fold. They then proceeded to physically fold the stack.
The final result was a 1.5-metre wide and 76-centimetre high wad comprising 8192 layers of paper.
Although no official rules govern the record, the students have decided that the folds must be in one direction and the complete structure should be self-supporting.