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Lattice models in ecology, paleontology, and geology

Roy E. Plotnick
Lattice models in ecology, paleontology, and geology (in Autogenic dynamics of and self-organization in sedimentary systems, David A. Budd (editor), Elizabeth A. Hajek (editor) and Sam J. Purkis (editor))
Special Publication - Society for Sedimentary Geology (2016) 106: 83-94


One of the most common and straightforward ways to explicitly represent spatial heterogeneity in simulations is with the use of some form of a lattice. Lattices are two-or three-dimensional grids in which entities are connected using various forms of local rules. They are thus ideal for representing systems with different levels of local interactions and, thus, for exploring the processes and impacts of self-organization. Models based on lattices have found wide usage in ecology and geology and often use the same basic formalism, despite the differences in the entities being studied. Groups of models, such as cellular automata, self-organized criticality, and diffusion limited aggregation, show how complex spatial structures and temporal behaviors can arise from local interactions only in the absence of external forcing. Other models that incorporate external processes, such as percolation-based models of fire and diseases, demonstrate that self-organization can strongly affect the signal produced by exogenous disturbances. Most lattice models are best used as tools for improving understanding of the dynamics of systems under various sets of assumptions of internal dynamics and external forcing, rather than as a means for accurate predictions of actual system behaviors. Lattice models that integrate ecology and sedimentology could be used to introduce an explicit spatial component into studies of Earth system history.

ISSN: 1060-071X
EISSN: 2159-5755
Serial Title: Special Publication - Society for Sedimentary Geology
Serial Volume: 106
Title: Lattice models in ecology, paleontology, and geology
Title: Autogenic dynamics of and self-organization in sedimentary systems
Author(s): Plotnick, Roy E.
Author(s): Budd, David A.editor
Author(s): Hajek, Elizabeth A.editor
Author(s): Purkis, Sam J.editor
Affiliation: University of Illinois at Chicago, Earth and Environmental Sciences, Chicago, IL, United States
Affiliation: University of Colorado, Department of Geological Sciences, Boulder, CO, United States
Pages: 83-94
Published: 2016
Text Language: English
Publisher: Society for Sedimentary Geology (SEPM), Tulsa, OK, United States
Meeting name: SEPM research conference; Autogenic dynamics of sedimentary systems
Meeting location: Grand Junction, CO, USA, United States
Meeting date: 20140803Aug. 3-6, 2014
References: 88
Accession Number: 2017-082530
Categories: Sedimentary petrology
Document Type: Serial Conference document
Bibliographic Level: Analytic
Illustration Description: illus. incl. 1 table
Country of Publication: United States
Secondary Affiliation: GeoRef, Copyright 2018, American Geosciences Institute.
Update Code: 201743
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