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How do simple energy activities comprise complex behavior of life systems? A conceptual synthesis and decomposition of the energy structure of life systems



How do simple energy activities comprise complex behavior of life systems? A conceptual synthesis and decomposition of the energy structure of life systems



Ecological Modelling 1: 79-89



Reduction and synthesis has always been Science's way to learn about complex systems. The problem is, of course, that after studying the behavior of the system components, the reconstruction of system behavior cannot be any simple summation of the behavior of the individual components. How should we go about with the reconstruction is an umbrella question addressed in the paper. In particular, one should ask what is the contribution of each component to the system, and what kind and quantitative relations do the connections among the components signify in the total system? Answering these questions is necessary to understand the internal mechanism of a life system, the regularity of its dynamics, and the nature of the control mechanisms. The general approach of the paper is based on the assumption that the life energy transmission structure of the system is the fundamental principle of reduction and synthesis. The paper generalizes the energy transmission in terms of two basic types, based upon the mode of linkage in energy activities, such as sequential or parallel. The basic mathematical concept is an eigenparameter analysis in a model called Life Energy System Model (LESM). Simple examples illustrate the models application. It is true that the energy transmission structure of a natural life system is usually very complex, in which case the analysis has to incorporate more details than shown in the paper. Yet, the analysis still follows the same fundamental principle as outlined.

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Accession: 010762303

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DOI: 10.1016/s0304-3800(03)00063-2


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