New Mexico Supercomputing Challenge

Burning of Zozobra: Made Safe for all

Team: 1

School: Academy For Tech & Classics/NMSA

Area of Science: Emergency Egress

Interim: The Santa Fe Fiestas is a time when families came together in order to celebrate the cultural diversity of the City Different. This also includes the burning of a 50 foot marionette representing the sorrows of the previous year. As of 2013, approximately thirty thousand people gather at the Fort Marcy Park to see “Old Man Gloom’s” demise. This creates a major problem when it comes to safety. Due to the fact that pyrotechnics can be touchy coupled with the fact that there are only a handful of exits out of the park, getting people out safely in the off chance that thing go wrong is critical.

The goal of this project is to create an effective exit plan based on the various calamities that can occur during Zozobra. This includes fire spreading out of control, a shooter and the worst case scenario, a bomb threat.

Problem Solution:

In order to solve the problem, we used Netlogo to recreate the event of Zozobra. There are a little over 6,000 to represent the people who go the Zozobra as well the various dangers. By setting up different reactions to the threats and changing the number of exits, we could see which way would maximize efficiency and safety for the crowd.

Progress to Date:

Currently, we have created the basis for the burning itself by using Netlogo to add a map of the Fort Marcy Park. The agents have been created as well as a program that makes them choose various exits to run to (though the closest one is the one we wish to test to see if it would be safer). We also have started creating the code to make the agents make decisions based off of the type of threat.

Expected Results:

When it comes to the final results we expect to see that the agents are able to get out safely with a very low chance of death.


Team Members: Kendra Carmona, Sabrina Cook, and Grace Graham

Team Members:

  Sabrina Cook
  Kendra Carmona
  Grace Graham

Sponsoring Teacher: NA

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