Mathematicians find core mechanism to calculate tipping points

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Physical systems like an ice sheet, a rainforest or a global wind system can tip into new states with large environmental and climatic consequences. Photo Daniel West, Freeimages.

Identifying tipping points in the Earth System is crucial for understanding the consequences of climate change. Researchers at the Technical University of Munich (TUM)and part of the TiPES project have discovered a universal mathematical structure at tipping points. It creates the basis for a better understanding of the behaviour of networked systems.

“We provide a mathematical tool that can be applied universally – in other words, in theoretical physics, the climate sciences and in neurobiology and other disciplines – and works independently of the specific case at hand,” says Christian Kühn, professor of multiscale and stochastic dynamics at TUM.

The work is published in Science Advances.

Read the press relase from the Technical University of München here.