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Open AccessArticle

Complexity Analysis of Global Temperature Time Series

UISPA–LAETA/INEGI, Faculty of Engineering, University of Porto, Rua Dr. Roberto Frias, 4200–465 Porto, Portugal
Department of Electrical Engineering, Institute of Engineering, Polytechnic of Porto, R. Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 431, 4249–015 Porto, Portugal
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
These authors contributed equally to this work.
Entropy 2018, 20(6), 437;
Received: 26 March 2018 / Revised: 25 May 2018 / Accepted: 2 June 2018 / Published: 5 June 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Power Law Behaviour in Complex Systems)
PDF [5098 KB, uploaded 5 June 2018]


Climate has complex dynamics due to the plethora of phenomena underlying its evolution. These characteristics pose challenges to conducting solid quantitative analysis and reaching assertive conclusions. In this paper, the global temperature time series (TTS) is viewed as a manifestation of the climate evolution, and its complexity is calculated by means of four different indices, namely the Lempel–Ziv complexity, sample entropy, signal harmonics power ratio, and fractal dimension. In the first phase, the monthly mean TTS is pre-processed by means of empirical mode decomposition, and the TTS trend is calculated. In the second phase, the complexity of the detrended signals is estimated. The four indices capture distinct features of the TTS dynamics in a 4-dim space. Hierarchical clustering is adopted for dimensional reduction and visualization in the 2-dim space. The results show that TTS complexity exhibits space-time variability, suggesting the presence of distinct climate forcing processes in both dimensions. Numerical examples with real-world data demonstrate the effectiveness of the approach. View Full-Text
Keywords: complexity; Lempel–Ziv complexity; sample entropy; temperature time series complexity; Lempel–Ziv complexity; sample entropy; temperature time series

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Lopes, A.M.; Tenreiro Machado, J.A. Complexity Analysis of Global Temperature Time Series. Entropy 2018, 20, 437.

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