MCRN members introduce CHAOS Focus Issue

Chaos: An Interdisciplinary Journal of Nonlinear Science highlights "Nonlinear Problems of Planet Earth" in its March 2015 Focus Issue (Volume 25, Issue 3). The four guest editors are Marty Anderies (MCRN member), Hans Kaper (MCRN Co-director), Emily Shuckburgh (MCRN Advisory Board member), and Antonios Zagaris (MCRN member).

Excerpts of the introduction plus the titles and authors of the 12 featured articles follow. Please go to for the complete CHAOS Focus Issue: Nonlinear Dynamics for Planet Earth by AIP Publishing.

"... We are extremely pleased with the initiative of AIP Publishing to devote a focus issue of CHAOS to the mathematics of planet Earth, with a special emphasis on nonlinear dynamics.

"The MPE program highlighted the need for researchers with a broad view of planetary issues. Planet Earth is more than a physical system; it is also a system that supports life in all its diversity. Unfortunately, it is also a system that is increasingly being affected by human activities in ways that we are only now beginning to understand. Testing hypotheses by large-scale controlled experiments is difficult or impossible, and there is no planet B. One way to study future scenarios is through large-scale computational experiments. Another, quite different approach is to focus on fundamental processes and develop mathematical models that are grounded in data but are simple enough to be effectively communicated among scholars and the public – something that benefits earth system science and policy. The latter approach, which is more conducive to mathematical analysis, can inspire new paradigms in mathematics. It was the primary motivation for the mathematical community to conceive the MPE program and turn its attention to issues of climate, global change, sustainability, biodiversity, and strategies for mitigation and adaptation. The articles included in this focus issue illustrate the variety of nonlinear dynamics problems that arise in the study of planet Earth."

A Dynamical Systems Analysis of the Data Assimilation Linked Ecosystem Carbon (DALEC) Models, by A. M. Chuter, P. J. Aston, A. Skeldon, and I. Roulstone

How robust is dispersal-induced spatial synchony? by Y. Zhang, F. Lutscher, and F. Guichard

Tipping point analysis of atmospheric oxygen concentration, by V. N. Livina, T. Vaz Martins, and A. Forbes

Flow networks: A characterization of geophysical fluid transport, by E. Ser-Giacomi, V. Rossi, C. Lopez, and E. Hernandez-Garcia

The temporal patterns of disease severity and prevalence in schistosomiasis, by M. Ciddio, L. Mari, M. Gatto, A. Rinaldo, and R. Casagrandi

An early warning indicator for atmospheric blocking events using transfer operators, by A. Tantet, F. Van der Burgt, and H. Dijkstra

Detection of bifurcations in noisy coupled systems from multiple time series, by M. Williamson and T. Lenton

The effect of slow spatial processes on emerging spatiotemporal patterns, by A. Doelman, L. Sewalt, and A. Zagaris

Nonlinear response in runoff magnitude to fluctuating rain patterns, by R. Curtu and M. S. Fonley

Understanding the distinctively skewed and heavy tailed character of atmospheric and oceanic probability distributions, by P. D. Sardeshmukh and C. Penland

Striped pattern selection by advective reaction-diffusion systems: resilience of banded vegetation on slopes, by E. Siero, A. Doelman, M. Eppinga, J. Rademacher, M. Rietkerk, and K. Siteur

A Bimodality Trap in Model Projections, by N. Santitissadeekorn, and C. Jones

Notice (3/25/15): The Introduction to the Focus Issue on "Nonlinear Dynamics for Planet Earth" of the journal CHAOS is now available online and is freely available for a period of 30 days. It may be accessed via the link below:


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