59,631 research outputs found

    Sequential Monte Carlo with Highly Informative Observations

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    We propose sequential Monte Carlo (SMC) methods for sampling the posterior distribution of state-space models under highly informative observation regimes, a situation in which standard SMC methods can perform poorly. A special case is simulating bridges between given initial and final values. The basic idea is to introduce a schedule of intermediate weighting and resampling times between observation times, which guide particles towards the final state. This can always be done for continuous-time models, and may be done for discrete-time models under sparse observation regimes; our main focus is on continuous-time diffusion processes. The methods are broadly applicable in that they support multivariate models with partial observation, do not require simulation of the backward transition (which is often unavailable), and, where possible, avoid pointwise evaluation of the forward transition. When simulating bridges, the last cannot be avoided entirely without concessions, and we suggest an epsilon-ball approach (reminiscent of Approximate Bayesian Computation) as a workaround. Compared to the bootstrap particle filter, the new methods deliver substantially reduced mean squared error in normalising constant estimates, even after accounting for execution time. The methods are demonstrated for state estimation with two toy examples, and for parameter estimation (within a particle marginal Metropolis--Hastings sampler) with three applied examples in econometrics, epidemiology and marine biogeochemistry.Comment: 25 pages, 11 figure

    A two-stage approach to relaxation in billiard systems of locally confined hard spheres

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    We consider the three-dimensional dynamics of systems of many interacting hard spheres, each individually confined to a dispersive environment, and show that the macroscopic limit of such systems is characterized by a coefficient of heat conduction whose value reduces to a dimensional formula in the limit of vanishingly small rate of interaction. It is argued that this limit arises from an effective loss of memory. Similarities with the diffusion of a tagged particle in binary mixtures are emphasized.Comment: Submitted to Chaos, special issue "Statistical Mechanics and Billiard-Type Dynamical Systems

    Tight Bounds for Consensus Systems Convergence

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    We analyze the asymptotic convergence of all infinite products of matrices taken in a given finite set, by looking only at finite or periodic products. It is known that when the matrices of the set have a common nonincreasing polyhedral norm, all infinite products converge to zero if and only if all infinite periodic products with period smaller than a certain value converge to zero, and bounds exist on that value. We provide a stronger bound holding for both polyhedral norms and polyhedral seminorms. In the latter case, the matrix products do not necessarily converge to 0, but all trajectories of the associated system converge to a common invariant space. We prove our bound to be tight, in the sense that for any polyhedral seminorm, there is a set of matrices such that not all infinite products converge, but every periodic product with period smaller than our bound does converge. Our technique is based on an analysis of the combinatorial structure of the face lattice of the unit ball of the nonincreasing seminorm. The bound we obtain is equal to half the size of the largest antichain in this lattice. Explicitly evaluating this quantity may be challenging in some cases. We therefore link our problem with the Sperner property: the property that, for some graded posets, -- in this case the face lattice of the unit ball -- the size of the largest antichain is equal to the size of the largest rank level. We show that some sets of matrices with invariant polyhedral seminorms lead to posets that do not have that Sperner property. However, this property holds for the polyhedron obtained when treating sets of stochastic matrices, and our bound can then be easily evaluated in that case. In particular, we show that for the dimension of the space n≥8n \geq 8, our bound is smaller than the previously known bound by a multiplicative factor of 32πn\frac{3}{2 \sqrt{\pi n}}
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