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Greek develops technique that spots warning signs of extreme events

29 September 2017

Meet Themistoklis Sapsis, the Greek scientist who created world-wide buzz for developing novel technique that spots warning signs of extreme events

Many extreme events — from a rogue wave that rises up from calm waters, to an instability inside a gas turbine, to the sudden extinction of a previously hardy wildlife species — seem to occur without warning.

Now this Greek engineer at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) have devised a framework for identifying key patterns that precede an extreme event. The framework can be applied to a wide range of complicated, multidimensional systems to pick out the warning signs that are most likely to occur in the real world. This method may help predict hotspots of instability affecting climate, aircraft performance, and ocean circulation.

Themistoklis (Themis) Sapsis is the Doherty Associate Professor of Mechanical and Ocean Engineering. He received his Diploma from National Technical University of Athens – School of Naval Architecture and Marine Engineering in 2005 and his PhD from MIT in 2011, in Mechanical Engineering. In 2011 he was appointed Assistant Research Scientist in the Courant Institute of Mathematical Sciences at NYU and joined MIT as a faculty in 2013.

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