Lab Home | Phone | Search
Center for Nonlinear Studies  Center for Nonlinear Studies
 Home 
 People 
 Current 
 Affiliates 
 Alumni 
 Visitors 
 Students 
 Research 
 ICAM-LANL 
 Quantum 
 Publications 
 Publications 
 2007 
 2006 
 2005 
 2004 
 2003 
 2002 
 2001 
 2000 
 <1999 
 Conferences 
 Workshops 
 Sponsorship 
 Talks 
 Colloquia 
 Colloquia Archive 
 Seminars 
 Postdoc Seminars Archive 
 Quantum Lunch 
 CMS Colloquia 
 Q-Mat Seminars 
 Q-Mat Seminars Archive 
 Archive 
 Kac Lectures 
 Dist. Quant. Lecture 
 Ulam Scholar 
 Colloquia 
 
 Jobs 
 Students 
 Summer Research 
 Student Application 
 Visitors 
 Description 
 Past Visitors 
 Services 
 General 
 PD Travel Request 
 
 History of CNLS 
 
 Maps, Directions 
 CNLS Office 
 T-Division 
 LANL 
 
Monday, August 31, 2015
3:00 PM - 4:00 PM
CNLS Conference Room (TA-3, Bldg 1690)

Colloquium

Extinction of established populations: A physicist's view

Baruch Meerson
Racah Institute of Physics, Hebrew University of Jerusalem

Extinction of a long-lived self-regulating population is a dramatic effect. It can result from a rare large fluctuation coming from the discreteness of individuals and stochasticity of their births, deaths and interactions. It also epitomizes the importance of rare events. Predicting the mean time to extinction accurately is important in many applications. Examples include assessment of viability of small populations, and evaluation of the lifetime of an infectious disease in a community. I will show how one can use a variant of WKB approximation that originates in quantum mechanics and other areas of physics, to calculate the mean time to extinction of a stochastic population. In this framework the most likely path of the population to extinction is described by an instanton-like trajectory of an underlying classical Hamiltonian.

Host: Eli Ben-Naim