It has been conjectured that the unpredictability of climatic systems is due to strange attractors (SAs) in the configuration space dynamics. One climatic record, the oxygen isotope ratio data from deep-sea cores that pertains to long periods on the order of one million years and provides direct correlation with the glaciation-deglaciation periods, seemed to indicate (under earlier analysis) a low dimensional attractor of correlation dimension D2 ≈ 3.1. Our present reanalysis of this data in light of recent methods suggested by Broomhead and King (BK) is at variance with that result. Two (model) four-variable systems that support chaotic strange attractors are examined using an analysis similar to BK to investigate the practical drawbacks of using a short time-series vis-a-vis the estimation of attractor dimension.

This content is only available as a PDF.