The Annals of Probability

Branching random tessellations with interaction: A thermodynamic view

Hans-Otto Georgii, Tomasz Schreiber, and Christoph Thäle

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A branching random tessellation (BRT) is a stochastic process that transforms a coarse initial tessellation of $\mathbb{R}^{d}$ into a finer tessellation by means of random cell divisions in continuous time. This concept generalises the so-called STIT tessellations, for which all cells split up independently of each other. Here, we allow the cells to interact, in that the division rule for each cell may depend on the structure of the surrounding tessellation. Moreover, we consider coloured tessellations, for which each cell is marked with an internal property, called its colour. Under a suitable condition, the cell interaction of a BRT can be specified by a measure kernel, the so-called division kernel, that determines the division rules of all cells and gives rise to a Gibbsian characterisation of BRTs. For translation invariant BRTs, we introduce an “inner” entropy density relative to a STIT tessellation. Together with an inner energy density for a given “moderate” division kernel, this leads to a variational principle for BRTs with this prescribed kernel, and further to an existence result for such BRTs.

Article information

Ann. Probab. Volume 43, Number 4 (2015), 1892-1943.

Received: April 2013
Revised: November 2013
First available in Project Euclid: 3 June 2015

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Zentralblatt MATH identifier

Primary: 60D05: Geometric probability and stochastic geometry [See also 52A22, 53C65] 60K35: Interacting random processes; statistical mechanics type models; percolation theory [See also 82B43, 82C43]
Secondary: 28D20: Entropy and other invariants 60G55: Point processes 82B21: Continuum models (systems of particles, etc.)

Branching tessellation coloured tessellation free energy Gibbs measure relative entropy STIT tessellation stochastic geometry variational principle


Georgii, Hans-Otto; Schreiber, Tomasz; Thäle, Christoph. Branching random tessellations with interaction: A thermodynamic view. Ann. Probab. 43 (2015), no. 4, 1892--1943. doi:10.1214/14-AOP923.

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