InterJournal Complex Systems, 1034
Status: Accepted
Manuscript Number: [1034]
Submission Date: 2004
Fundamental Long-Term Stability Conditions for Design of Complex Systems: Equilibrium and Functional Periodicity
Author(s): Nam P. Suh

Subject(s): CX.6



All matter – subatomic particles to human beings -- that exist in nature owe their existence to their long-term stability. The complexity theory presented by Suh in recent years shows that for long-term stability, both engineered systems and natural systems must be either at a stable equilibrium state or must have a functional periodicity. In engineering and physics, the former, i.e., equilibrium, is well known, but the concept of functional periodicity has been introduced only recently. There are many different kinds of Functional Periodicity that govern natural and engineered systems. The performance of engineered systems has been improved by introducing a functional periodicity by design. Nature has evolved based on the stability provided by equilibrium states or by having functional periodicity. Classical physics such as Newtonian mechanics and thermodynamics are based on the assumption that equilibrium states exist. The basic postulates of modern physics such as quantum mechanics and superstring theory are consistent with the proposed existence of functional periodicity in natural systems. The particle/wave duality of matters that forms the basis of quantum mechanics can be explained in terms of the stability criterion presented in this paper rather than in terms of the probability argument presented in the past.

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