Self-organized Criticality in Forest-landscape Evolution

J. C. Sprott
Department of Physics, University of Wisconsin- Madison, Madison, WI 53706, USA

Janine Bolliger and David J. Mladenoff
Department of Forest Ecology and Management, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Madison, WI 53706 USA

(Received 5 October 2001: received in revised form 3 January 2002; accepted 3 January 2002)


A simple cellular automaton replicates the fractal pattern of a natural forest landscape and predicts its evolution. Spatial distributions and temporal fluctuations in global quantities show power-law spectra, implying scale-invariance, characteristic of self-organized criticality. The evolution toward the SOC state and the robustness of that state to perturbations are described.

Ref: J. C. Sprott, J. Bolliger, and D. J. Mladenoff, Phys. Lett. A 297, 267-271 (2002)

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