# How Much Gold Is In The Oscar Statuette?

In a recent Huffington Post article (see here) I asked how much gold the Oscar statuettes actually contain. Considering that these little men are like newborn babies (based on their official dimensions and weight), we can answer the question by calculating the statue’s surface area. One good approximation to a newborn’s surface area is the equation

$BSA=0.024265 \times W^{0.5378}H^{0.3964}, \$

where BSA is the body surface area in square meters, W is the weight in kilograms, and H is the height in centimeters. Using the official weight and height of 8.5 pounds and 13.5 inches, respectively, gives a body surface area of about 0.2036 square meters. To convert this to square feet, we use the fact that 1 meter is equivalent to about 3.28084 feet. So, 1 square meter is about

$1 \, \text{m}^2 \, = (3.28084)^2 \, \text{ft}^2 \, = 10.7639 \, \text{ft}^2. \$

Using this, we can then convert the 0.2036 square meters into square feet:

$0.2036 \, \text{m}^2 \, \times \frac{10.7639 \, \text{ft}^2}{1 \, \text{m}^2} = 2.1912 \, \text{ft}^2. \$

The square root of this is about 1.4803 feet, or about 17.76 inches. That means those little Oscar statues have a gold coating about equal to the area of a square of side 17.76 inches. (As I describe in the Huffington Post article, this is roughly the area enclosed by the square made up of your two forearms.)

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