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The volume fraction of a Poisson germ model with maximally non-overlapping spherical grains

  • D. J. Daley (a1), H. Stoyan (a2) and D. Stoyan (a2)


This paper considers a germ-grain model for a random system of non-overlapping spheres in ℝ d for d = 1, 2 and 3. The centres of the spheres (i.e. the ‘germs’ for the ‘grains’) form a stationary Poisson process; the spheres result from a uniform growth process which starts at the same instant in all points in the radial direction and stops for any sphere when it touches any other sphere. Upper and lower bounds are derived for the volume fraction of space occupied by the spheres; simulation yields the values 0.632, 0.349 and 0.186 for d = 1, 2 and 3. The simulations also provide an estimate of the tail of the distribution function of the volume of a randomly chosen sphere; these tails are compared with those of two exponential distributions, of which one is a lower bound and is an asymptote at the origin, and the other has the same mean as the simulated distribution. An upper bound on the tail of the distribution is also an asymptote at the origin but has a heavier tail than either of these exponential distributions. More detailed information for the one-dimensional case has been found by Daley, Mallows and Shepp; relevant information is summarized, including the volume fraction 1 - e-1 = 0.63212 and the tail of the grain volume distribution e-y exp(e-y - 1), which is closer to the simulated tails for d = 2 and 3 than the exponential bounds.


Corresponding author

Postal address: School of Mathematical Sciences, Australian National University, Canberra ACT 0200, Australia. Email address:
∗∗ Postal address: TU Bergakademie Freiberg, Institut für Stochastik, 09596 Freiberg, Germany.


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Daley, D. J., Stoyan, D. and Stoyan, H. (1997). The volume fraction of a Poisson germ model with maximally non-overlapping spherical grains. Statistics research report No. SRR 006–97, Centre for Mathematics and its Applications, Australian National University, Canberra.
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The volume fraction of a Poisson germ model with maximally non-overlapping spherical grains

  • D. J. Daley (a1), H. Stoyan (a2) and D. Stoyan (a2)


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